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MSD’s Report Shows the Company Achieves Important ESG Milestones

MSD has released its 2021/2022 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Progress Report. The report highlights the company’s performance and progress in its four main ESG areas: access to health, employees, environmental sustainability, and ethics and values. The company continues to work on transitioning to renewable energy sources to meet its 2025 renewable energy target.

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According to the report, MSD’s ongoing commitment to ESG is fully integrated into the company’s Corporate Strategic Framework, which is anchored in its purpose to use the power of cutting-edge science to save and improve lives around the world.

The report also reflects milestones such as the December 2021 launch of the Sustainability Funding Framework to raise and target funds for essential ESG projects and support its overall ESG strategy. The company’s first offering was an initial $1 billion sustainability bond aimed at supporting projects and partnerships in its four ESG priority areas.

To further accelerate MSD’s ESG efforts, the company will also continue to be a member of the Billion Dollar Roundtable (BDR), a highly prominent industry organization that recognizes and celebrates companies that successfully invest at least $1 billion with minority-, women-, veteran-, LGBT- and disability-owned businesses. MSD also hosted the latest BDR Summit, which provided an opportunity for companies to optimize their positive economic impact.

Read more about MSD’s commitment to ESG and find other important business news with our companion app Born2Invest.

Other highlights from this year’s report include:

Access to healthcare

The company committed to supplying 91.5 million doses of its human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine for use in Gavi alliance-supported countries from 2021 to 2025 and completed expansions at its Elkton, Virginia, production facility to increase capacity and supply. With plans for additional expansions of existing and new plants, MSD expects to double the supply of HPV vaccines between 2020 and 2023.

In line with its focus on ensuring broad and equitable access to healthcare, the company began executing a comprehensive supply and access strategy early in the COVID-19 pandemic to accelerate equitable global access to its investigational oral antiviral drug against COVID-19.

The company conducts programs to provide access to its drugs and vaccines when market solutions are inadequate or unavailable. For example, as the war in Ukraine continues, it is committed to getting life-saving aid, medicines, vaccines, and supplies to those who need them most. In the first half of 2022, MSD committed more than $93 million in essential products and funds to ensure that refugees from Ukraine and those remaining in the country have access to healthcare.

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In addition to the billions of people MSD has reached with innovative medicines, vaccines, and access strategies throughout its history, the company’s goal is to enable 100 million more people to access its portfolio of innovative products worldwide through access strategies, solutions, and collaborations by 2025.

Employees

By 2021, the company achieved more than 99% pay equity in the U.S. between male and female employees, as well as between white and non-white employees in equivalent positions. The company has set a goal of increasing representation in senior management positions by 2024 and reported significant progress in 2021. The company increased the representation of women globally by 36%, up from 31% achieved in 2020. By 2024, it aims to reach 40%.

The company increased black/African American representation in the U.S. to 7% versus 3% achieved in 2020. By 2024, it aims to reach 10%. It also increased U.S. Hispanic/Latino representation to 6% versus 5% in 2020. By 2024, it aims to increase it to 10%.

Environmental sustainability

MSD is on track to achieve carbon neutrality across its operations by 2025. Aiming to reduce its operational greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (scopes 1 and 2) by 46% by 2030 against the 2019 baseline, the company achieved a 9% reduction in scope 1 and 2 emissions against the 2019 baseline.

With a target of obtaining 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2025, MSD obtained 41% of its electricity from renewable energy sources in 2021. The company continues to work on transitioning to renewable energy sources to meet its 2025 renewable energy target.

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Ethics and values

In 2021, MSD maintained 100% compliance with regulatory requirements for active incident monitoring, risk/harm analysis, and timely reporting of data breaches. The company fosters a culture of “speaking up” with the goal of maintaining or exceeding its current percentage of employees responding favorably to the “Willingness to Report” question in the employee survey on an annual average.

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(Featured image by Towfiqu barbhuiya via Unsplash)

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J. Frank Sigerson is a business and financial journalist primarily covering crypto, cannabis, crowdfunding, technology, and marketing. He also writes about the movers and shakers in the stock market, especially in biotech, healthcare, mining, and blockchain. In the past, he has shared his thoughts on IT and design, social media, pop culture, food and wine, TV, film, and music. His works have been published in Investing.com, Equities.com, Seeking Alpha, Mogul, Small Cap Network, CNN, Technology.org, among others.