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Philips Foundation publishes its 2021 Annual Report

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May 24, 2022

By the Philips Foundation team

  • Over 17 million people in underserved communities provided with access to quality healthcare in 2021
  • New social impact investment vehicle established to help nurture early-stage social enterprises 
  • Disaster relief in times of crisis highlighted by today’s humanitarian assistance to war-torn Ukraine, and projects responding to the COVID-19 pandemic


Amsterdam, the Netherlands — Philips Foundation, with its mission to provide access to quality healthcare for underserved communities through meaningful innovation, today announced the publication of its 2021 Annual Report.


The report highlights 24 projects initiated by Philips Foundation in collaboration with NGOs, government organizations, and community groups in 2021 that helped deliver better access to quality healthcare for more than 17 million people in underserved communities around the world, more than double the number the year before. In total, 28 new initiatives were started, including support for 8 social enterprises and 9 new projects to help hospitals and communities respond to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The report also highlights Philips Foundation’s newly-incorporated social impact investment vehicle, which nurtures early-stage social enterprises.


“Donations alone do not sustainably improve healthcare systems. Maximum impact and long-lasting change can only be achieved through meaningful innovation born of a thorough understanding of local context and needs, cultural behaviors, and standard practices, together with the myriad details associated with the rollout of new solutions or services,” said Margot Cooijmans, Director of Philips Foundation. “Our success in 2021 means we are well on our way to realizing the foundation’s ambition of providing better access to healthcare for 100 million people a year in underserved communities by 2030.”


Philips Foundation focuses on non-communicable diseases (NCDs), mother and child care, and acute (emergency) care, digitalizing and integrating technology-enabled healthcare solutions for underserved communities. The foundation explores ways to empower community health workers by providing them with tools, technologies, and skills that enhance the quality of care they can deliver. Increasing the probability of sustaining healthcare services and make them independent of donations, the foundation supports social entrepreneurs that share its commitment to create positive social impact.


Examples of how these approaches are bringing about lasting change include:


  • Deploying technology-enabled solutions — Despite its recognized benefits, diagnostic imaging to identify high-risk pregnancies is insufficiently available in many low-resource rural and remote areas, due to a shortage of trained physicians, as well as barriers such as a lack of awareness, distance to hospitals, and high out-of-pocket expenses. For example, Philips Foundation supports multiple projects that leverage the tele-health capabilities of Philips’ handheld point-of-care ultrasound platform to deliver expert remote learning programs for sonographers and midwives, as well as providing real-time support.
  • Empowering community health workers — Completing the ‘last mile’ to connect people living in remote communities with their healthcare system often remains a challenge in limited-resource settings. In collaboration with the ‘Save a Mother’ initiative in Kenya, Philips Foundation is helping to provide community-based healthcare workers with a backpack full of diagnostic devices, from a contactless thermometer to a blood pressure monitor and an automated respiratory rate counter, that helps them diagnose conditions such as pneumonia, early-stage diabetes and high-risk pregnancies.    
  • Supporting social entrepreneurs — International NGOs typically fly in two-thirds of the aid supplies they need when responding to a humanitarian crisis because they cannot easily leverage local supply chains. Through its newly-formed social impact investment vehicle (Philips Foundation Impact Investments B.V.) Philips Foundation is providing financial support and guidance on how to scale up social enterprises such as Solvoz, which created a digital procurement platform that allows aid organizations to quickly identify local sources of the equipment and services needed for rapid disaster response.

Our success in 2021 means we are well on our way to realizing the foundation’s ambition of providing better access to healthcare for 100 million people a year in underserved communities by 2030.

Margot Cooijmans

Director of the Philips Foundation

Disaster relief in times of crisis


Philips Foundation’s mission is to provide lasting access to healthcare to underserved communities, as well as disaster relief in times of crisis. The foundation helped launch 9 new COVID response projects in 2021, bringing the total number during the pandemic to 50. In response to the humanitarian crisis caused by the war in Ukraine, it is providing ongoing support to get medical equipment, field hospitals, mother and child care products, and medical support to those most in need.


Establishing sustainable healthcare for underserved communities


In September 2021, Philips Foundation incorporated Philips Foundation Impact Investments B.V. – a social impact investment vehicle that aims to accelerate the development of potentially high impact access-to-care opportunities and reduce healthcare inequality by nurturing early-stage social enterprises through investment and support. In 2022, Philips Foundation will also establish the Philips Foundation Knowledge Hub – an open resource database showcasing the projects and the lessons learned as well as scientific articles and findings from Philips Foundation projects with partners around the world. 


To read the full Annual Report, click here.




For further information, please contact:


Yannick Eshuijs

Philips Foundation

Tel.: +31 6 1852 6633


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About Philips Foundation

Philips Foundation is a registered non-profit organization established in 2014 – with a mission to provide access to quality healthcare for underserved communities across the globe. By leveraging Philips’ capabilities and combining them with the experience and expertise of non-governmental organizations and other community-focused and impact-driven enterprises, Philips Foundation helps create innovative pathways to open up affordable healthcare for communities most in need. By also partnering with innovative social entrepreneurs rooted in the local ecosystem, Philips Foundation aims to increase access to healthcare for 100 million people a year by 2030. More information can be found at

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