Bayer, one of the largest multinational pharmaceutical and life sciences companies in the world, began partnering with Direct Relief in 2014 to respond to the West Africa Ebola outbreak in Liberia and Sierra Leone. Since then, Bayer has donated medical products valued at over $100 million to support emergency responses, as well as general healthcare strengthening via access to medicines within the U.S. and Mexico, as well as support to more than 60 countries around the world.
Around Covid-19, Bayer made a donation of 1 million health and wellness products to Direct Relief, for distribution throughout Direct Relief’s extensive U.S. and Mexican healthcare provider networks to improve access to over-the-counter medicine during the pandemic. Bayer also made a $2 million financial contribution to support Direct Relief’s U.S. Covid-19 Fund for Community Health, which Direct Relief used to provide cash grants to Federally Qualified Health Centers in cities most affected by Covid-19, especially that serve high numbers of African-American and Hispanic populations.
Strengthening Access and Family Planning Services in the U.S. Safety-Net
In addition to emergency response and ongoing support, Bayer has also bolstered reproductive health services in health centers across the United States. One example is the Community Health Awards in reproductive health, which aims to advance programs at women’s health clinics, community health centers, and free & charitable clinics that strengthen the provision of family planning services to the most underserved and vulnerable populations across the United States. The program, funded by Bayer and implemented by Direct Relief, provides awards for new and expanded programs that remove barriers to access for reproductive health services in underserved communities. Funding for programs aims to increase access to family planning education, outreach, and services.
In tandem, Bayer also launched a three-year commitment of IUD Product Donations to Direct Relief, representing an important component of women’s health products to safety-net health providers seeking to provide an array of high-quality contraceptive choices for their most vulnerable patients. The availability of the Bayer IUDs supports low-income uninsured women seeking family planning services through Direct Relief’s network of U.S. providers with an easy-to-use access point for long-acting reversible contraception.