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During the COVID-19 pandemic, community healthcare workers in Peru traveled door-to-door to reach children with VERMOX Chewable tablets for treatment of intestinal worms. The medicine is donated by Johnson & Johnson and implemented by INMED Partnerships for Children. Photo by INMED Partnerships for Children.
Photo by INMED Partnerships for Children.

Strengthening Health Systems

At Johnson & Johnson, we contribute to advancing health and well-being in the communities in which we live and work. Our Global Community Impact (GCI) organization, through funding from the nonprofit Johnson & Johnson Foundation and other functional divisions and operating companies across the three Johnson & Johnson business segments, drives programming for our community giving, social impact and other philanthropic initiatives around the world. For more information, see our Position on Strengthening Health Systems and Position on Community Impact.

In 2020, we made significant progress toward our UN SDG Commitment across our community impact work. Our new Health for Humanity 2025 Goals include a specific commitment to support nurses and other frontline health workers.

2025 Goals

For full details of this Goal and KPI, see our Health for Humanity 2025 Goals.
Support Frontline Health Workers
By 2030, in its efforts to strengthen health systems globally, the Johnson & Johnson Center for Health Worker Innovation will support and champion at least one million nurses, midwives and community health workers with skills, tools and growth opportunities.
For full details of this Goal and KPI, see our Health for Humanity 2025 Goals.
For full details of this Goal and KPI, see our Health for Humanity 2025 Goals.

Race to Health Equity: In 2020, we announced Our Race to Health Equity platform, backed by $100 million in commitments and collaborations over the next five years to invest in and promote health equity solutions for Black people and other communities of color in the United States. Society has been significantly impacted by systemic racism, the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic decline throughout 2020, which have all spotlighted healthcare inequities.

Our commitment prioritizes three key areas:

  • Healthier Communities – investing in programs that help provide equitable healthcare for underserved communities;
  • Enduring Alliances – forging partnerships and alliances that combat racial and social health determinants; and
  • Diverse & Inclusive Corporate Culture – ensuring a diverse and inclusive workforce.

For more information, see Our Race to Health Equity webpage.

There is an urgent need to take on the inequities rooted in systemic racism that threaten health in communities of color across the United States. That’s why Johnson & Johnson is focusing its efforts and committing $100 million to address racial and social injustice as the critical public health issue that it is. As the largest and most broadly based healthcare company in the world, we are uniquely positioned to convene private, public and community organizations in pursuit of this shared aspiration and work together to make a meaningful impact through science, business, public health, and philanthropy.
Alex Gorsky
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Johnson & Johnson

In 2020, we engaged to create more equitable health systems through several collaborations. We partnered with Penn Medicine’s Center for Community Health Workers to scale up community health worker programs in communities of color; and with National Medical Fellowships to introduce new scholarships and mentoring for students entering the medical, scientific and health fields. We invested in diverse entrepreneurs whose solutions address healthcare through Johnson & Johnson Impact Ventures (JJIV), an impact investment initiative founded in 2019 within the Johnson & Johnson Foundation. JJIV invests in mission-driven social enterprises that offer solutions for low-income populations. In particular, we believe that impact should be built into the business model and we typically engage once the business model has some early traction and has proven market viability.

We also leveraged our innovation platforms to support health equity. For example, in the face of increasing maternal mortality rates, JLABS JLABS Johnson & Johnson Innovation—JLABS View entire glossary launched the Maternal Health QuickFire Challenge, with a goal to spark new technologies that will improve pregnancy, birth, and postpartum care outcomes for women, making birth safer in the United States. Four challenge winners are advancing technology, surgical instrumentation or training methodologies that improve mothers’ health literacy, access to services, or clinical outcomes.

Several Consumer Health brand initiatives supported Our Race to Health Equity in 2020 around the world. LISTERINE and JOHNSON'S Baby joined the UN Foundation’s “Unite for Health" program, bringing partners together to demand greater cooperation and equity in health. In Brazil, STAYFREE partnered with NGO Plan International to engage consumers in choosing a social project in areas that can help other girls to progress in life: education, entrepreneurship and women’s health. In France, our teams partnered with Secours Populaire Français to donate VANIA napkins and NETT tampons to women unable to access sanitary products.

Additional progress in strengthening health systems in 2020 includes:

Investing in frontline health workers: Our daily lives and global economies are intricately tied to the strength of our health systems, and in turn resilient health systems depend on a trained, supported and empowered frontline health workforce. In 2020, continuing our long track record in this area, Johnson & Johnson announced a $250 million commitment to support frontline health workers to help close the global health worker gap and make health for all a reality. To that end, our Center for Health Worker Innovation is working with partners around the globe to develop a portfolio of programs in regions with the highest community health burdens and health worker gaps, aiming to support one million frontline health workers (nurses, midwives and community health workers) and reach 100 million people by 2030.

Meeting the needs of nurses: We collaborated with the American Organization for Nursing Leadership on a new learning program for nurses on LinkedIn and conducted a study with Montana State University, examining COVID-19’s effect on the U.S. nursing workforce to help identify new needs. In addition, we supported a new study led by WHO WHO World Health Organization View entire glossary and other organizations that documents the potential impact of midwives in preventing and reducing maternal and newborn mortality and stillbirths.

A call to action to support frontline health workers: We call on all stakeholders to advance policies and programs that support frontline health workers and ensure the global health workforce is adequately resourced to care for future generations. In 2020, we published our Frontline Health Workers Policy Position that advocates for policies and programs including fair pay, ongoing professional development, work-life balance, safety and security, and meaningful diversity in leadership. Our advocacy for frontline health workers focuses on five key areas:

  • Training and education;
  • Leadership and management;
  • Well-being and resilience;
  • Connection and integration; and
  • Respect and recognition.

Impact investment to support health worker innovation: In 2020, JJIV’s global investment portfolio grew to include a total of 12 exciting enterprises in the Americas, Europe, East Africa and Southeast Asia, covering a broad range of health innovation including: education, municipal monitoring of public health, diagnostics, healthcare models, financing and access to clean water.

Supporting African American physicians: In 2020, we entered into a joint initiative with the Medical Society Consortium on Climate & Health and the National Medical Association (NMA), the largest and oldest national organization representing the interests of African American physicians, to help educate and recruit climate advocates within NMA to protect their communities from the disproportionate health impacts of climate change. Through this partnership, we created the first fellowship program for physicians of color focused on climate and health equity.

Community Clinic  Staff Portrait  2871_201812122871JBRTCCR2.jpg
Healthcare professionals at a community health clinic in Jacksonville, Fla.

In this section

We share our progress in 2020 in the following areas:

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