Pfizer IncPfizer Inc and The Pfizer Foundation announced, on "World Cancer Day", that they have awarded $7 million in 2009 to help 13 non-governmental organizations (NGOs) focus on improving both treatment and prevention for cancer patients, through its Global Health Partnerships grants program (GHP). Since 2007, 29 Global Health Partnerships grants have been awarded to NGOs working in more than 46 countries around the world. These new grants support the global commitment of the Pfizer Foundation and Pfizer's Oncology Business Unit to promote access to quality health care and education and to advance science and innovation in the development of breakthrough medicines that will cure or control cancer.

"These grants represent an important step in enabling us to partner with key scientists and organizations to encourage the advancement of cancer education and research globally," said Mace Rothenberg, M.D., vice president of Clinical Development and Medical Affairs for Pfizer's Oncology Business Unit. "This year's grants focus on critically important areas such as early breast cancer detection and education, establishment of patient navigation programs and methods to increase overall knowledge and understanding of cancer - all of which play an important role in the fight against cancer."

Cancer accounts for one in eight deaths globally - more than AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined. One in three people will get cancer in their lifetime: each year, more than 11 million new cases of cancer are diagnosed and close to 8 million people die from cancer. Among women worldwide, breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer death. Globally there are an estimated 4.4 million women alive who have been diagnosed with breast cancer within the last five years. In developed countries, 30 percent of women with earlier stages of breast cancer will eventually be diagnosed with metastatic disease. In developing countries, the majority of women with breast cancer are diagnosed with advanced stage disease.

The Pfizer Foundation Global Health Partnership program is supporting 29 innovative public health programs together with Pfizer Inc offices in support of both cancer and tobacco control by providing $47 million in funding over four years. Jointly funded by the Pfizer Foundation and Pfizer Inc, this year's $7 million investment in oncology will help cancer organizations to improve prevention, early detection and diagnosis for breast cancer; strengthen public awareness of cancer risks; increase patients' knowledge and understanding of treatment options, with a special focus on psycho-social factors; and engage in long-term capacity building efforts through training, technical assistance, and collaborative partnerships.

"We are grateful to the Pfizer Foundation for its support of our five-year cancer prevention program, 'Today's children, tomorrow's world'. We have run campaigns against second-hand tobacco smoke, unhealthy diet and lack of physical activity, overweight and obesity and conducted a survey of cancer beliefs and behavior that policymakers everywhere will find useful in promoting cancer prevention", said, Isabel Mortara, UICC executive director.

The Global Health Partnerships grants will be evaluated by the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University, whose task is to build sustainable evaluation capacity among grantees. "In partnership with Johns Hopkins and our outstanding partners, we are pleased to take a very rigorous approach to our programs, yielding learnings that strengthen national cancer agencies and improve public health policies and services for cancer patients," said Caroline Roan, vice president, Pfizer Foundation.

The 2009 Global Health Partnerships grants have been awarded to the following organizations:

  • UICC: International Union Against Cancer (Global Program): Supporting the global cancer prevention campaign, "Today's Children Tomorrow's World", which includes expert reports, public awareness raising, and tailored cancer prevention initiatives.
  • The New Hope in Health Foundation (Turkey): Translating epidemiological data on cancer for Ministry of Health and patient advocacy activities to develop evidence-based policies for cancer control.
  • American Cancer Society Latin America (Mexico, Brazil, Venezuela, Costa Rica, Colombia, Argentina): Support for a network of NGOs in Latin America through targeted capacity-building, annual content training in early detection programs and grants to support breast cancer early detection cancer programs.
  • American Cancer Society Asia (Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines): Improving cancer control with tailored technical assistance, program grants for early detection and screening, improving quality of life, and strengthening access to treatment and services, as well as regional trainings and information-sharing.
  • Akebono-Kai Breast Cancer Network (Japan): Initiative to increase the mammography screening rate in Tokyo from 2% to 50% by strengthening facilities and creating targeted opportunities for breast cancer screening.
  • Health Policy Institute (Japan): Support for national and regional/prefectural levels for tobacco and cancer control, including best practice analysis of cancer and tobacco control efforts and a development of a network of cancer patient advocates.
  • Shanghai Municipal Center for Disease Control and Prevention (China): Enhancing quality of care with family support, counseling, treatment referrals by providing psycho-social training to physicians to offer cancer patients with additional services and resources.
  • Cause Marketing Fundraisers (South Africa): Support for a collaboration among key South African breast cancer organizations to provide a mobile mammography screening service as well as overall breast cancer early detection and education.
  • European Organization for Research & Treatment of Cancer, EORTC (Belgium): Analyzing high-quality psychosocial data from 120 oncology clinical trials and develop new protocols for oncology clinical trial design to assess quality of life and social indicators related to cancer treatment.
  • Irish Cancer Society (Ireland): Creation of a model for Irish cancer support networks that will build the capacity and improve the effectiveness of the many cancer support and self-help groups across the country.
  • The Ralph Lauren Center for Cancer Care & Prevention (USA): Establishing patient navigation programs with cancer clinics and community hospitals to eliminate barriers to early diagnosis and boost timely cancer treatment in low-income, uninsured and medically underserved populations.
  • George Washington University Cancer Institute (USA): Support of a Patient Navigation, Cancer Survivorship and Health Policy Research and Training Center to bring a multi-disciplinary approach to integrating patient navigation, cancer survivorship and health policy.
  • Delta Society/Good Dog Foundation (USA): Support for research on the clinical benefits of animal assisted therapy as a factor in the treatment of individuals suffering from cancer.

The International Union Against Cancer (UICC), based in Geneva Switzerland is the leading international non-governmental organization dedicated solely to the global control of cancer. Its vision is of a world where cancer is eliminated as a major life threatening disease for future generations. With over 300 member organizations in more than 100 countries, UICC is a resource for action and a voice for change. The International Union Against Cancer is committed to bringing together cancer researchers, healthcare professionals, patients, governments, NGOs, industry and the media in a comprehensive global alliance for cancer prevention and control.

About Pfizer Foundation
The Pfizer Foundation is a charitable organization established by Pfizer Inc. The Foundation is a separate and independent tax-exempt organization. The Foundation's mission is to promote access to quality health care and education, to nurture innovation, and to support the community involvement of Pfizer people.

The Global Health Partnerships program is one of the Pfizer Foundation's signature initiatives reflecting Pfizer's global commitment to working with a diverse group of local NGO experts towards improving the diagnosis and treatment of cancer and reducing the disease's incidence and burden. Pfizer Inc and the Pfizer Foundation will be providing a total of more than $47 million (USD) over four years (2007 - 2010) through 29 grants addressing emerging challenges in cancer and tobacco control in 46 countries across five continents. The program collaborates with a diverse group of local experts to improve the diagnosis and treatment of cancer and to reduce its incidence and burden.

About Pfizer Oncology
Pfizer Oncology is committed to the discovery, investigation and development of cancer treatments and currently has 22 innovative compounds in clinical development across four platforms. By leveraging the strength of its resources and scientific talent, Pfizer Oncology strives to discover and develop novel treatment options to improve the outlook for oncology patients.