Innovation Matters

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Oct 24, 2017

Making life better for billions

Estimated reading time: 4-6 minutes

Philips steps up commitment to ensuring healthy lives through extended commitment to improve the lives of 300 million people in underserved healthcare communities by 2025.

It’s no small task to improve the world, but by partnering up with the right people, in the places that need it most, it’s far from impossible. We believe that there’s always a way to make life better. At Philips, we’ve made the decision to focus our company on health technology with a mission to make the world healthier and more sustainable through meaningful innovation.


Since making this commitment we’ve teamed up with governments, NGOs, hospitals, customers, consumers and others to work towards this target, and have been involved with some incredible projects around the world.


Against the backdrop of the UN Social Good Summit, we’ve asked four Philips employees to look back at how they’re contributing to a healthier and more sustainable world.

Making life better for billions video

Stories from our colleagues on improving people’s lives


With up to 20% of pregnancies worldwide estimated to be ‘at-risk’, 99% of the resulting maternal deaths occur in developing countries according to the World Health Organization. By working together with the right groups we can develop new ideas and approaches that will make a difference to mothers and their babies.  


In 2016, Philips teams partnered with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to develop a pregnancy toolkit designed for the early detection and referral of high-risk pregnancies. “The toolkit is not the result of just a one-off interaction - it made me realise why it’s so important to continue to develop solutions that can improve people’s lives”, says Simona Rocchi, Philips Senior Design Research Director , who was part of the team. Together with the ICRC, the toolkit is being rolled now to 8 high-risk countries in Africa, with the ambition to reach 75.000 pregnant women. 

Simona ICRC

A similar undertaking took place in Indonesia, a country who, in 2014 had one of the highest maternal death rates in the world. By working together with a hospital, Philips developed an app allowing midwives to build relevant health profiles of pregnant women during their visits. The app allows data to be centralized enabling caregivers to see all patient information in one place and monitor women’s conditions and assess high-risk pregnancies remotely by way of the central Mobile Obstetrical Monitoring dashboard. A powerful memory for Johan Idrus, Professional Services Consultant at Philips Indonesia, he simply says “When I Look back at these photos. I feel pride. I worked with doctors, midwives and gave training to ensure the program works properly. Improving lives means creating better life.”


Strengthening primary care to achieve higher health coverage is also instrumental to improving lives on a large scale.  July 2017, in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Government of Mandera County, Kenya, Philips opened a new CLC in a region that has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world. Ties Kroezen, Venture Manager at Philips Netherlands, remembers the project and said “having the ability to work with the UN and local government to reduce the heavy burden of maternal and child mortality, makes me very proud.”

Philips CLC using ultrasound technology
Healthy people depend on a healthy planet. In 2016, Philips announced a new 5-year sustainability program building on its strong legacy in this area.  Amongst numerous other projects, Philips have partnered up with a windfarm in Texas, USA to ensure that all operations in North America are powered by 100% renewable energy – a key step towards its global 2020 carbon neutrality ambitions. Joe Pendergast, Global Commodity Lead and Facilities Management reflects on the achievement, saying “The single act to enter a long term agreement with the wind-farm in Texas made our operations in North America carbon neutral. I’m proud to be part of a company that really underlines their commitment.”
PEC 2017 Panama

2016 success and the future


Philips is committed to having 95% of our business revenue linked to the Sustainable Development Goals by 2020, in particular SDG 3 – Ensuring healthy lives for all, SDG 7 – Sustainable Energy, SDG 12 – Responsible consumption and production. Addressing health topics ranging from community access to healthcare, first aid training and ensuring healthy lifestyles for children are at the heart of the Philips Foundation’s mission to reduce health inequality through meaningful innovation.


Leading the way in sustainable operations and bringing healthcare to those that need it most, Philips has already improved the lives of 2.1 billion people in 2016 While every life improved is a victory, the world population is still growing - and with it, the needs of billions. And as populations continue to grow, Philips remains committed to improving the lives of generations to come.

About Innovation Matters

Innovation Matters delivers news, opinions and features about healthcare, and is focused on the professionals who work within the industry, as well as Philips as a cutting-edge health technology organization. From interviews with industry giants to how-to guides and features powered by Philips data, our goal is to deliver interesting, educational and entertaining content to empower and inspire all those who work in healthcare or related industries.


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Innovation matters team

Innovation Matters delivers news, opinions and features about healthcare, and is focused on the professionals who work within the industry, as well as Philips as a cutting-edge health technology organization.

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