Merck: A Lifetime of Collaboration
Partnerships are vital to the work that we do—from supporting our volunteers on the ground to distributing lifesaving medications around the world. With the help of extraordinary organizations, corporations and foundations, we’re delivering broad, long-lasting impact.
Merck & Co., Inc* is one of these corporations. Our partner for over two-decades, the piece below shares more about our collaboration, aligned approaches, and impact.
CMMB and Merck & Co., Inc have over 200 years of combined experience advancing the field of global health. Since its founding in 1912, CMMB has worked in over 100 countries to advocate for and develop the health and resilience of underserved communities. Merck’s US branch was founded in 1891 and through their research and development have discovered new groundbreaking treatments including the vitamin B21, the first ever measles vaccine, and statins to treat high cholesterol.
A Shared Belief
CMMB and Merck share a belief that in order to create innovative and long-lasting impact for those in need, it is necessary to adopt a multifaceted approach that includes access to medicines, but also training, capacity building, infrastructure, and community empowerment. CMMB’s CHAMPS framework embodies this mindset. It is built around a long-term commitment to communities that enlists their input to build the foundations for long-lasting health from the ground up. In addition, CMMB’s Medical Donations and Volunteers Programs leverage longstanding US partnerships to provide high quality medicines and services to CMMB’s CHAMPS communities, as well as to partners working across the developing world.
Merck has its own robust Corporate Responsibility program which is organized into four sectors; access to health, employees, environmental sustainability, and ethics & values. In 2018 alone, their philanthropic investment was $2.8 billion dollars, a combination of medical product donations, skills-based volunteering, and cash grants.
Two-decades of Collaboration—And More to Come
It is no surprise that CMMB and Merck have had an incredibly fruitful collaborative relationship spanning decades. As a participant in Merck’s Medical Outreach Program, CMMB engages with Merck through a number of avenues.
Since 1998, medicines and medical supplies donated by Merck have been provided to CMMB to support the work of our in-country teams as well as over 600 partner organizations in 88 countries. This donated product has been crucial to provide access to medicines for patients who would be otherwise unable to afford them, increase the variety and quality of medicines going to vulnerable populations, and enable health facilities to transfer limited funding to other aspects of patient and community care.
Merck’s Annual Allotment Program has been particularly impactful to CMMB’s work in CHAMPS communities with high-quality products selected based on local needs. Our staff are able to utilize this product for targeted community health interventions designed by CMMB’s Programs Department.
In addition to gift in kind donations, since 2008 Merck has funded 13 different health initiatives with cash grants totaling $375,000 to support the program and operations expenses of CMMB’s work on the ground. This commitment to funding is emblematic of Merck’s dedication to ensuring that health work undertaken for vulnerable communities is intentional, well-designed and well executed. For example, in 2018 Merck supported CMMB Medical Donations Program supply chain capacity building initiative in Haiti. This allowed the MDP team to implement supply chain management and inventory management training, as well as software to track the selection, transportation, distribution, and impact of medical donations. The initiative also included provision of training and creation of resources for CMMB Haiti staff and partners to empower beneficiary facilities to track and understand their medical needs and make forecasts and intentional selections from donation offers to increase analysis and efficiencies in their procurement efforts—and to optimize their resources.
A Mission of Corporate Social Responsibility
Lastly, Merck encourages its employees to live the mission of corporate social responsibility with their gift matching program. For 17 years, Merck has matched the dollar value of donations made to CMMB by their employees. The result has been over $37,000 going to support those in need at the last mile.
Partnerships like this one between CMMB endeavor to overcome the large and stubborn obstacles to achieving healthier lives for all. We look forward to partnering in the years to come.
* Known as MSD outside the U.S. and Canada