Mectizan Donation Program
The Pill That's Changed Millions of Lives

Film & Campaign Description

You don’t know a problem exists until it becomes a problem.

That’s where the Mectizan Donation Program started, over three decades ago. As a small organisation that started with nothing more than the desire to bring relief to people suffering from crippling disease, its beginnings were humble. But, by being ingenious and through sheer resourcefulness, it has grown to play a major role in bringing treatment and prevention to some of the world’s most remote communities. This is why the organisation is considered a pioneer in the field of Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs).

In 2015, thanks in part to their co-ordination of the world’s largest drug donation programme, NTDs were added to the Sustainable Development Goals 2030 by the World Health Organisation.

As the longest-running mass drug donation programme of its kind in the world, and with a relatively small team, MDP has a massive reach which has been achieved through many years of co-ordinating a global network of people who deliver something remarkable. And it’s all the more remarkable for being driven by a non-profit ethos that has delivered a donation programme which reaches some of the most remote places on earth.

Created by Cloud9Media, our film is a way of articulating the strength of MDP’s 35-year campaign to bring life-changing treatment and prevention to communities that need it most. In the busy space that is the global health sector, MDP deserves to be recognised as a pioneer for the groundbreaking development and rollout of Mectizan, a drug which has changed the lives of millions of people by ending the suffering associated with river blindness and lymphatic filariasis.

Mectizan Donation Program

Established in 1987, the Mectizan Donation Program (MDP) is the longest-running drug donation program for neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). MDP has worked with partners in 58 countries in Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, and the Western Pacific to achieve a future free of river blindness (onchocerciasis) and lymphatic filariasis (LF or elephantiasis).

Across the globe, millions of people are at risk of infection with these debilitating illnesses.

MDP oversees the donation of Mectizan® by Merck & Co., Inc.* to eligible countries where river blindness and lymphatic filariasis are endemic. National programmes work with partners including nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) to train a network of community-directed distributors to ensure that everyone living in endemic communities has access to treatment. Together these powerful local efforts are creating a world free of river blindness and LF.

*Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, N.J., U.S.A., is known as MSD outside of the United States and Canada.

UN Sustainable Development Goals

We align with the following UN Sustainable Development Goals: