Corporate Responsibility

World Sight Day 2013: Sandoz addresses the global need for affordable eye care

October 11, 2013 - Ophthalmics are high-quality medicines that target the anatomy, physiology and diseases of the eye. With the addition of Falcon’s broad line of generic ophthalmic products in 2011, Sandoz is now the global generics leader in this differentiated field. Currently, Sandoz’s opthalmics portfolio focuses on glaucoma and anti-allergy medicines.

 “To be the leader we need to understand the ophthalmic needs of patients, payers, pharmacists, and ophthalmologist,” said Tanja Dormels, Sandoz Head of Retail Growth Franchises Western Europe, Middle East, and Africa. “Future product launches are based largely on our analysis of which products are needed to address all patient groups. For example, there are a number of different glaucoma products used for particular patient groups that have yet to become available in generic form. These are the medicines Sandoz ophthalmics hopes to bring to the market soon.”

Glaucoma is a disease most prevalent among people over age 60. About 65% of all people who are visually impaired are aged 50 and older, while this age group comprises only 20% of the world's population, according to the World Health Organisation. Increasing elderly populations in many countries mean that more people will be at risk of age-related visual impairment.

“Accessibility to high-quality, affordable eye care medicines is essential in regions like the Middle East and Africa,” said Dormels. “This is also true in Western Europe, as the health authorities there have cost containment programs. Prices for off-patent, generic medicines are often lower than originator medicines. Therefore, Sandoz generic ophthalmics can add significant value to healthcare systems in these regions.”

How Alcon contributes

Together with Sandoz, Alcon, the global leader in eye care and a Novartis company, invites you to join in the effort to help raise awareness and address the global problem of preventable blindness and vision impairment.

Leading up to and on World Sight Day, Sandoz and Alcon encourage you to:

  • Collect donations and send to one of the sight-saving organizations supported by Alcon, or a local charity of your choice that focuses on eye health
  • Participate in or speak at local World Sight Day events to share your personal experience in supporting vision care needs in your community and around the world
  • Share how you've helped enhance sight to enhance lives through your volunteer efforts
  • Donate free eye exams, if you are an eye care professional
  • Host your own World Sight Day celebration
  • Participate in or speak at local World Sight Day events to share your personal experience in supporting vision care needs in your community and around the world

A fact sheet with more information on World Sight Day can be found here.

To learn more about Alcon and its activities surrounding World Sight Day 2013, click here.

All facts and figures cited in this article were taken from the World Health Organization’s Global Data on Visual Impairments 2010.

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