NCD Alliance partner Access Accelerated highlights progress made in six-year report

24th May 2023

Geneva, May 24 - Access Accelerated, a collective of leading biopharmaceutical and life science companies dedicated to confronting the growing global noncommunicable disease (NCD) crisis, announced the release of a six-year report: Key Lessons in Advancing Access to NCD Care: Collaboration, Connectivity, Community.

This milestone report, which was officially launched at a World Health Assembly (WHA) side event on May 23 , highlights the initiative’s outcomes, impact, and collective learnings between 2017 and 2022 and serves as a retrospective and a showcase for the initiative’s success stories and challenges.

The report was launched at an event which featured Dr. Alarcos Cieza from the World Health Organization, Dr. Lilian Mbau from the Kenya Cardiac Society and Dr. Monica Vledder from the World Bank, who explored how the collective lessons gained while working towards the SDGs can shape future actions and discuss ways they can be leveraged during the next half of the implementation phase of Agenda 2030.

The NCD Alliance (NCDA) is one of Access Accelerated’s strategic partners, together with the City Cancer Challenge Foundation, PATH, the World Bank and the World Heart Federation. The collective action of this partnership has helped improve access to NCD screening, diagnosis, and treatment around the world, reaching over 700 million people through 54 partner projects in 37 countries and catalysing US$1.6 billion in investment in 2022 alone.

Access Accelerated and NCDA have partnered since 2018 to drive effective advocacy to enable NCD policies and programs that are shaped by people’s lived experiences. Over five years, the partnership has strengthened the capacity of national NCD alliances, ensuring civil society advocacy efforts are strongly grounded in communities and the unique insights of people living with NCDs.

Support from Access Accelerated enabled NCDA to facilitate the meaningful involvement of people living with NCDs across Vietnam, Malaysia, India, Ghana, and Kenya in 2022. Progress made towards advancing comprehensive national NCD responses was especially noteworthy in Ghana and Kenya, with the development of Advocacy Agendas of People living with NCDs in both countries that set the foundation for country alliance’s advocacy efforts and placed a strong emphasis on putting people first.

These advocacy efforts had excellent results. The Ministry of Health’s NCD Strategy Development technical working group invited NCD Alliance Kenya (NCDAK) members to join and co-develop the national strategic plan. NCDAK also provides inputs to the NCD Inter-sectoral Coordination Committee, which plays a critical role in the strategy’s implementation.

“I am a big believer in dialogue. And knowing that policy makers are listening and understanding is crucial.” — Dr. Catherine Karekezi Executive Director Noncommunicable Diseases Alliance Kenya

In Ghana, Access Accelerated support enabled NCDA advocacy efforts that facilitated increased action on NCD prevention and control since 2018, mobilizing communities towards a comprehensive NCD response. This culminated with the National NCD Policy being launched in 2022. Informed by its network of people living with NCDs, the Ghana NCD Alliance provided civil society perspectives at the National Strategic Roundtable on Noncommunicable Diseases hosted by the Ghanaian Ministry of Health. The event included an alliance member living with a NCD, who reflected on the role that civil society organizations and people with lived experience have played in the development of strategy and implementation documents and their anticipated applications.

“When I speak in front of dignitaries, government ministers, and healthcare decision-makers, I want to paint a picture of our lived experience and make them understand that people living with NCDs have the resources, information and experience that policymakers need to take the right step and have the right impact. It’s so important that we are heard and listened to.” — Christopher Agbega, Lived experience advocate and Global Advisory Committee member of the Our Views, Our Voices initiative


At global level, Access Accelerated supports the NCDA’s Our Views, Our Voices initiative. It promotes the meaningful involvement of people living with NCDs to engage in the NCD response, supporting and enabling individuals to share their views, take action, and drive change. Over five years, the partnership facilitated the meaningful involvement of people living with NCDs in the NCD response, by providing platforms for involvement and training to build the necessary skills and knowledge for effective advocacy. NCDA developing train-the-trainer and digital models, enabling the initiative to more broadly train people living with NCDs. Access Accelerated supported NCDA in delivering 18 trainings to over 280 people living with NCDs around the world.

“We are making considerable progress and I am hoping we will be able to extend this [Our Views, Our Voices] training so that, down the line, more people can combine efforts to advocate for their own welfare and that of others within their community.” — Labram Musah, National Coordinator Ghana NCD Alliance

Access Accelerated also supported the Our Views, Our Voices digital platform to make it what it is now - a dynamic hub for resources, information and advocacy. The platform features a series of consultations with nearly 2,000 people living with NCDs across 76 countries, leading to the development of the Advocacy Agenda of People living with NCDs. This agenda, powerfully worded in the first person, now serves as a compass for the NCD community to advocate for global improvements in four key areas: human rights and social justice, prevention, treatment, care and support, and meaningful involvement.

Since 2018, the Advocacy Agenda has been framed through a national lens, led by national NCD alliances around the world, so that each country can own and take forward its agenda. This partnership supported development of National Advocacy Agendas of people living with NCDs in Kenya (2018), Ghana (2019) and Vietnam (2021).

“For me, one of the biggest takeaways from the Advocacy Agenda is the power of giving a voice to people living with NCDs. Being patient-focused has made a huge difference to the level of awareness and understanding of how we deliver care and support.” — Dr. Catherine Karekezi, Executive Director Noncommunicable Diseases Alliance Kenya

Access Accelerated further supported NCDA to elevate the voices of people living with NCDs in the development of the Global Charter on Meaningful Involvement of People Living with NCDs. It is based on the principle that people living with NCDs — including care partners — should be meaningfully involved in every step of decision-making that affects their lives. To create the Global Charter, NCDA carried out extensive consultations with nearly 500 voices in 50 countries — people, communities and organizations — half of whom were living with NCDs. Access Accelerated support contributed towards regional multistakeholder dialogues and a grant program to support in-country consultations on meaningful involvement of people living with NCDs, particularly with hard-to-reach communities.

This is just a sample of the experience gained and achievements made by Access Accelerated. Six years after its founding, the initiative has accumulated a wealth of knowledge and experience, to help shape a vision for accelerated progress towards achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. By capturing impacts beyond hard numbers, the report demonstrates the importance of local engagement, trust, and social capital in improving NCD outcomes over time.