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UNICEF Corporate and Philanthropic Partnerships

La Caixa Foundation

La Caixa Foundation has partnered with UNICEF since 2000 supporting various programmes and emergency relief interventions


Helping save Children’s Lives from Pneumonia Deaths through Innovative and Sustainable Solutions


In November 2015, La Caixa Foundation and UNICEF launched a new partnership to fight childhood pneumonia.

Available statistics indicate that pneumonia is the leading killer of children under 5 years old, claiming the lives of nearly 1 million children every year – more than AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined.

Pneumonia, however, is treatable, and simple interventions – such as vaccines, improved indoor air quality, good nutrition and safe hygiene practices – can help reduce its impact.

Pneumonia treatment can also be improved through proper diagnosis, use of amoxicillin dispersible tablets and awareness on how to seek early care. UNICEF acknowledges the crucial role of community health care workers to help recognize the symptoms of pneumonia and seek appropriate care immediately.

To address this urgent need and to spearhead the use of innovative diagnostic devices, La Caixa Foundation and UNICEF have joined efforts to strengthen the fight against pneumonia through a new partnership: Helping save Children’s Lives from Pneumonia Deaths through Innovative and Sustainable Solutions.


The partnership was launched at the first Pneumonia Innovation Summit held in New York on 12 November 2015, at which La Caixa Foundation committed 5 million euros to support a UNICEF-led product innovation project, Acute Respiratory Infection Diagnostic Aid (ARIDA). The project is coordinated by the UNICEF Supply Division Health Technology Centre and Innovation Unit and aims to identify innovative ways to improve the diagnosis of pneumonia among children. The research programme will pilot new pneumonia diagnostic devices that measure a sick child’s respiratory rate to check for fast breathing, a key sign of lung infection. Initially, 2,400 automatic diagnostic devices will be distributed and tested in eight high-prevalence countries, benefiting 120,000 children. Community health care workers will be trained in how to use the device to accurately diagnose pneumonia.

For an organization like La Caixa Foundation, contributing as much as possible to the development of science is a duty,” Jaume Giró, General Manager of La Caixa Foundation, said at the launch. “That is why this is such a special day for us: we are tackling a disease that kills hundreds of thousands of lives every year and that we cannot ignore just because it happens in faraway places or we have too many domestic issues to address.

This alliance is a unique opportunity to elevate the fight against pneumonia to a top priority,” said Gérard Bocquenet, UNICEF’s Director of Private Funding and Partnerships. “This support will be a significant step towards ensuring healthy lives for all children – particularly the most vulnerable.”

The two-year global alliance aims to contribute to the reduction of child mortality by:

- Improving the diagnosis of pneumonia through the use of innovative solutions that automatically measure the respiratory rate;

- Enhancing the capacity of community health care workers and – where feasible – frontline health workers by training them in the use of innovative diagnostic aids;

- Increasing the availability of appropriate amoxicillin doses for treatment.

To learn more about UNICEF’s Innovation Project ARIDA, visit: https://www.unicef.org/innovation/innovation_81722.html


About La Caixa support to UNICEF

Since 2000, La Caixa Foundation’s support has helped UNICEF develop initiatives to combat child malnutrition in Mauritania and Ethiopia, promote access to basic education in Sudan, prevent HIV/AIDS and provide care for children affected by HIV/AIDS in Burundi, and provide life-saving emergency relief programmes in Somalia, Haiti and the Philippines.


About La Caixa Foundation

As part of the commitment of La Caixa Foundation to help eradicate poverty in low-income countries, the organization supports innovative, productive and job creation programmes in collaboration with over 70 Spanish and international organizations.

The International Cooperation Programme of La Caixa Foundation was created in 1997 and has since promoted 566 projects in development cooperation and humanitarian aid in 62 countries and with a contribution of over 115 million euros, in addition to promoting awareness and training in Spain. More information is available at http://www.lacaixa.es/obrasocial.




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