QIAGEN’s mission to make improvements in life possible focuses our attention on the long-term welfare of society. Our commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility focuses on open and equal access to lifesaving molecular diagnostics for people around the world. We also want to help ensure that communities where we work can flourish, by supporting local initiatives aiming to improve lives in cultural, social or scientific settings.
QIAGENcares is the company’s Corporate Social Responsibility program, an umbrella for support of initiatives that improve lives by fighting diseases in which our products can play an important role. We collaborate with non-governmental health organizations, local nonprofits and ministries of health to help ensure efficient distribution of donations. QIAGENcares aims to provide access to cutting-edge molecular technologies to people worldwide, regardless of their economic or social status, including diagnostic solutions designed especially for settings with limited medical resources.
Good global citizenship
While QIAGENcares includes a broad range of initiatives, we have a strong commitment to fighting cervical cancer through testing for infections with the human papillomavirus (HPV). HPV is the primary cause of cervical cancer, which claims nearly 300,000 lives every year, 80 percent of them in developing countries. Studies have shown that access to advanced screening methods, such as the company’s HPV tests, can significantly reduce cervical cancer incidence and mortality rates – yet an estimated 1 billion women worldwide do not receive cervical cancer screening. QIAGEN works closely with global and local public health partners to select and serve appropriate recipient groups most effectively.
An innovative aspect of QIAGEN’s commitment to access for lifesaving cancer screening is our careHPV Test, an adaptation of our state-of-the-art HPV test specifically designed for use in low-resource settings, such as developing areas that lack running water. The careHPV Test was developed in collaboration with the nonprofit health organization PATH with support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The careHPV system (test kits and an instrument to read results) offers HPV detection in a matter of hours – a critical characteristic for women who travel to clinics from isolated villages and may need to be treated the same day. Both QIAGEN HPV screening technologies – careHPV and the “gold standard” digene HPV Test – are playing a key role in reducing cervical cancer worldwide.
"QIAGEN's innovative Sample to Insight solutions are making improvements in life possible around the world."Thierry Bernard, Senior Vice President Molecular Diagnostics Business Area
Examples of recent QIAGENcares initiatives
- Through the careHPV donation program, QIAGEN placed 18 screening systems in Nicaragua, Honduras and El Salvador, which are being used to screen thousands of women in partnership with PATH and local ministries of health. The goal is to help the countries be able to sustain the testing long-term. In El Salvador, QIAGEN is working with the Ministry of Health and an NGO, Basic Health International, toward a near-term screening goal of 30,000 women. This program also includes a study that involves women taking the sample themselves.
- QIAGENcares also is active in Africa and has placed six careHPV instruments (two each) in Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya, where non-governmental organizations are evaluating the careHPV Test for incorporation into their programs for women’s healthcare. In addition, QIAGEN sent five careHPV systems to Tanzania for a study in partnership with the Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer.
- In Vanuatu, a group of islands in the South Pacific, QIAGEN has donated careHPV Tests for a national screening program. In Vanuatu, cervical cancer is the second leading cause of cancer, making screening and vaccination a critical mission.
Support of local initiatives
QIAGEN supports a broad range of activities in communities where our businesses are based. These include sponsorship of health walks, music festivals, science education, disease awareness campaigns, installation of school laboratories and promotion of biology in school curricula. Our local engagement goes beyond financial. In Hilden, for instance, QIAGEN is collaborating with the local Rotary Club to help integrate refugees from Syria and other war-torn countries through a program that includes language and cultural training, assessment centers, and internships at QIAGEN. Hilden also works with Hephata, a local institution for citizens with disabilities, who undertake a broad array of operational tasks for the company, including certain packaging, production and cleaning responsibilities. In Maryland, QIAGEN employees committed more than 1,000 hours of volunteer time in 2016 to meeting community needs. Our Community Service Committee mobilizes volunteers and provides company funds for projects that improve the lives of people locally and nationally.
Humanitarian and environmental projects
QIAGEN’s leadership in Sample to Insight solutions leads us into a wide variety of scientific collaborations. For example, we worked with the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) for the identification of people missing from the war in Srebrenica (Bosnia in 1995). Thanks to QIAGEN forensic technologies, ICMP scientists were able to extract DNA from challenging bone samples and identify thousands of victims, providing closure for families. Since then, QIAGEN has maintained its involvement with ICMP’s global efforts to identify missing persons.
QIAGEN has also supported groundbreaking research into the long-term environmental impacts of radioactive contamination from disasters in Chernobyl, Ukraine, and Fukushima, Japan. In 2016 QIAGEN provided products to to the MetaSUB International Consortium aiming to analyze the urban microbiome using DNA and RNA samples from subway systems, buses and parks in 54 cities around the world. QIAGEN also provided molecular technologies to help the Cheetah Conservation Fund protect the endangered species in Africa by generating insights into populations and ecological interactions of the big cats. In many different ways, QIAGEN products make improvements in life possible.
Results and progress
QIAGEN’s innovative Sample to Insight solutions are making improvements in life possible around the world, both through our commercial presence in Molecular Diagnostics and Life Sciences and through our corporate citizenship initiatives. The two are strategically linked, as customers recognize the value of QIAGEN’s collaborative approach and see novel applications of our unique molecular technologies.
Corporate citizenship also has a positive effect on employees’ loyalty and identification with the company. In our recent anonymous “pulse check” surveys, about two third of employees said they would recommend QIAGEN as an employer of choice. The survey showed an overall job satisfaction rating of 68 percent across all functions and locations. A satisfied and loyal workforce is a key asset for creating sustainable value in the years to come. More than the awards QIAGEN has received, we are proud of the growth we see in employees from our investments in personnel development, career management and benefit programs. QIAGEN is known as an employer of talented, passionate and motivated employees.