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Publication - published on 26 Mar 2020

The Methodology for the 2021 Access to Medicine Index

The methodology for the next Access to Medicine Index captures the priority areas for pharmaceutical companies to advance access to medicine, amidst international calls for sustained action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and universal health coverage by 2030. Developed through the Access to Medicine Foundation’s consensus-building process, these priorities have been distilled into a new, tighter analytical framework for 2021.

The UN has called for a decade of action in order to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and universal health coverage by 2030. Pharmaceutical companies have a unique role to play, centered on the development and delivery of health products, while ensuring appropriate management of access and responsible business practice. 

The priority areas for pharmaceutical companies to act on these goals have been refined by the Access to Medicine Foundation via a broad-ranging stakeholder dialogue and distilled into a new tighter analytical framework for the next Access to Medicine Index. 

The 2021 Index will track company action to rank 20 of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies. It will measure companies’ actions to improve access to medicine across 106 low- and middle-income countries and in relation to 82 high-burden diseases, conditions and pathogens. The analytical framework for 2021 has a new, focused structure, with 33 indicators grouped into three Technical Areas:

  1. Governance of Access
  2. Research & Development
  3. Product Delivery

Indicators have been tailored to better compare like with like. As a result, the 2021 Index will make more sensitive comparisons of the access approaches being used by pharmaceutical companies in different markets and territories.

The Foundation will now begin the process of data collection, verification, scoring and analysis. The Foundation will use this latest methodology to guide and steer pharmaceutical companies on where the focus now lies, and how they match with the many solutions and practices identified in previous iterations of the Index.


Learn more

View our detailed overview of each company’s performance in the Index, including breakdowns of their product portfolios and R&D pipelines.

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