Stop TB Partnership

Johnson & Johnson Philippines Participates in a Local World TB Day Event to Confirm the Commitment to Advancing the Global USAID SIRTURO® Donation Program

23 April 2015 - On World TB Day 2015, Johnson & Johnson Philippines announced in partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) that eligible patients living with pulmonary multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) in the country would be among the first to benefit from the SIRTURO® (bedaquiline) donation program, following regulatory approval by local authorities in October 2014.

The confirmation came at a multi-faceted event that brought together TB stakeholders from advocates to government officials to industry representatives, including the Philippines’ Department of Health Secretary Janette Garin, USAID Mission Director to the Philippines Gloria Steele and Dr. Roberto Salvino, Medical Director at Johnson & Johnson Philippines.

The World Health Organization (WHO) designates the Philippines as both a high TB and MDR-TB burden country. Of the 98 million people in the Philippines, there are 290,000 living with TB, and two percent of all new TB cases and 21 percent of all retreatment cases have MDR-TB, a form of the disease that is particularly hard to treat and which occurs when the standard medicines stop working. World TB Day was a critical moment to address how the country is going to tackle this issue moving forward.

In March 2015, Janssen Therapeutics, one of the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson, officially signed an agreement to partner with USAID to donate 30,000 courses of SIRTURO® to 100 low- and middle-income Global Fund-eligible countries over the next four years. The program began fulfilling orders as of 1 April.

Over the coming months, the Johnson & Johnson Philippines team will continue collaborating with USAID, the national TB program and all other relevant stakeholders to finalize the introduction of this new treatment, with a focus on ensuring appropriate use.