NovartisNovartis Group Company associates across 32 countries will participate in a new Novartis health and well-being initiative during the first Novartis Be Healthy Celebration Week from September 19-23, 2011. During the week, Novartis Group sites are offering many opportunities to help associates take control of their personal health. This includes providing information, activities and tips to promote health and help prevent future health issues.

Novartis is focusing on prevention programs in Be Healthy because statistics from the World Economic Forum (WEF) show that workplace health and well-being programs addressing lifestyle changes can help prevent up to 40% of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as cardiovascular disease, cancer and lung disorders.

"Be Healthy supports our strong belief that good healthcare starts with our own employees," said Joseph Jimenez, CEO of Novartis. "This initiative helps Novartis associates to take an active role in managing their own health."

Each day of Be Healthy Celebration Week will focus on one of Be Healthy's four pillars - Move, Choose, Know and Manage. Each pillar will provide Novartis associates with tips and education to lead healthier lives.

Each participating site will introduce a range of health and well-being activities to encourage Group Company associates to exercise regularly, choose healthy food offerings in canteens and participate in free screenings to learn important personal numbers such as blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Support programs will be available for those managing an illness or condition while working.

Be Healthy will have broad reach within the Group. In 2011, 76 of the largest Novartis sites across 32 countries are involved which means that the initiative will reach 80% of affiliates' associates. In 2012, the initiative will be expanded to 88 additional sites and reach 95% of associates.

The Novartis Be Healthy Celebration Week coincides with the WHO sponsored "Wellness Week" and the United Nations (UN) High Level Meeting on the Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Diseases.

Novartis is a member of the World Economic Forum (WEF) Workplace Wellness Alliance which puts an emphasis on health and well-being. The WEF alliance is a response to the growing burden of NCDs, the chief cause of death globally and a significant contributor to global healthcare costs.

About Novartis
Novartis provides healthcare solutions that address the evolving needs of patients and societies. Focused solely on healthcare, Novartis offers a diversified portfolio to best meet these needs: innovative medicines, eye care, cost-saving generic pharmaceuticals, consumer health products, preventive vaccines and diagnostic tools. Novartis is the only company with leading positions in these areas. In 2010, the Group's continuing operations achieved net sales of USD 50.6 billion, while approximately USD 9.1 billion (USD 8.1 billion excluding impairment and amortization charges) was invested in R&D throughout the Group. Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Novartis Group companies employ approximately 121,000 full-time-equivalent associates and operate in more than 140 countries around the world.