Phil Austin
  • Cigna joins forces with Doctors Without Borders (MSF) to help support humanitarian aid 
  • The health insurer will fund intervention projects in north eastern Nigeria, an area particularly affected by armed conflict and lack of access to water, food and healthcare.

Madrid, November 14 2018 – Health insurer Cigna has launched a European CSR programme to support Doctors Without Borders (Médecins Sans Frontières) in its mission to provide medical and nutritional aid where it is needed most.

Spearheading the health insurer’s new initiative and uniting thousands of Cigna employees across Europe, the partnership forms part of Cigna’s mission to improve the health, wellbeing and sense of security of those it serves.  

Working closely with Doctors Without Borders, Cigna Europe and its employees will help fund and build life changing projects in areas that need it most. The first project, voted for by Cigna employees, will focus on providing treatment to 256 children suffering from severe malnutrition in Nigeria. 

Food scarcity caused by ongoing conflict is a major problem for the people who are currently living in the Nigerian states of Borno and Yobe. Cigna’s support will help provide the necessary and essential treatments for the medical recovery of children in these affected areas. This will involve around five weeks of outpatient treatment and medical monitoring of the children, helping them to recover their nutritional status and proper development. 

Commenting on the new partnership, Phil Austin, CEO Cigna Europe said: "This is a hugely rewarding project to be involved in and is something our entire European workforce have come together to show their support for. The work Doctors Without Borders carry out around the world to help those who suffer medical and nutritional care exclusion is of immeasurable value and contributing to this cause is a real honour.” 

Elena Martínez, from Doctors Without Borders, adds: “Thousands of people have fled north eastern Nigeria having survived very precarious conditions without access to the most basic healthcare for a long time. They are hugely dependent on international aid to survive. Having the support of organisations like Cigna allows us to provide the humanitarian medical assistance so desperately needed.”  

Phil Austin, together with Elena Martínez and Juan José Montes, CEO of Cigna Spain, formalised the collaboration during an event held at Cigna’s headquarters in Madrid. 

The partnership will come into effect immediately, with further projects to follow in 2019 and beyond, underpinned by active employee engagement. All employees across Europe, for example, will be encouraged to actively support the partnership through local fundraising initiatives.