The awards, handed out during the nonprofit organization’s June 13 annual gala at New York’s Pierre Hotel, recognize two groups: the employees of UnitedHealth Group who for more than 10 years have supported Project HOPE’s efforts in the Philippines, Japan, Haiti and the United States, and the Gaucher Initiative in Egypt, jointly organized by Project HOPE and Sanofi Genzyme. The latter won the award in recognition of its work in providing access to therapy for Gaucher disease.patients in Egypt.
“The people of UnitedHealth Group are driven by our mission: to help people live healthier lives and help make the healthcare system work better for everyone. It is a privilege to work with them and to accept this award on their behalf,” UnitedHealth Group CEO Stephen J. Hemlsey said in a press release. “We are grateful for and proud of our long relationship with Project HOPE, which not only creates hope among millions worldwide, it delivers on it every day.”
Project HOPE, a nonprofit organization based in Bethesda, Maryland, was founded in 1958. The Gaucher Initiative in Egypt began in 2000. Today, it runs seven treatment centers across Egypt and employs clinical specialists who can properly diagnose, refer and manage patients with this rare genetic disorder.
“We’re extremely grateful to UnitedHealth Group and its employees worldwide who have shown an enormous commitment to improving healthcare for vulnerable communities and supporting HOPE’s emergency relief programs at the most critical times in people’s lives,” said Dr. Tom Kenyon, CEO of Project HOPE. “Many lives in Egypt have improved over the past 15 years thanks to the Gaucher Initiative, a transformative program that has helped patients in need, strengthened the local healthcare system and contributed to a better global understanding of Gaucher disease.”
Added Dr. Daniel Ruskin, Sanofi’s head of global medical affairs: “At Sanofi Genzyme we recognize that serious diseases don’t discriminate. They affect people from all corners of the world. We share with Project HOPE a commitment to providing sustainable healthcare solutions to those in need, and we look forward to continuing our partnership to help the therapies we develop reach patients regardless of their economic circumstances.”
The theme of this year’s gala is “HOPE: The Voice of Global Health,” and marks almost 60 years of global health programs addressing complex issues such as maternal and child health, non-communicable diseases, infectious diseases and humanitarian missions responding to disasters and emergencies around the globe.