Vifor Pharma leads initiatives to raise awareness of Iron Deficiency - 2nd Global Iron Deficiency Day on November 26, 2016

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), iron deficiency affects up to one-third of the world's population1,2, and is particularly common in elderly individuals and those with certain chronic diseases1 such as chronic kidney disease3,4, congestive heart failure5 or inflammatory bowel disease2,6.

Iron deficiency is specifically a common comorbidity for patients with chronic diseases. It significantly impacts Quality of Life (QoL)7 and can influence clinical outcomes, making it a concern for both patients and physicians.

Prof. Maria Cappellini, University of Milan, Italy, says: "Iron deficiency is very common but often overlooked, especially in people with chronic conditions. Iron deficiency is a health-related condition in which iron availability is insufficient to meet body needs and therefore its timely detection and treatment is important, because iron is essential to the functioning of multiple organs."

Vifor Pharma supports various activities around the world to highlight the impact of iron deficiency and raise awareness, for example:

  • A global website that provides patients, carers and healthcare professionals around the world with a comprehensive source of information about the causes, effects and symptoms of iron deficiency.
  • Symptom Browser App: A new app for information about iron deficiency, which is easy to download via the Apple app store or Google Play.
  • Support of the European Iron Deficiency Survey8,9: The survey of over 10,000 adults across seven European countries highlights the significant lack of awareness around the symptoms associated with the condition, despite almost 50% of sufferers confirming the condition to have a notable negative impact on their working life - and one in three describing their condition as severe or very severe at the time of diagnosis. The report also revealed that the main symptom that drove those to consult a health care professional was tiredness/fatigue, which was mentioned as the first symptom experienced, followed by pale skin and poor attention.

Data show that nearly one third of the population is not aware of iron deficiency and iron deficiency anaemia. Even among those people who are aware of iron deficiency, one third cannot recognise its symptoms8. In light of the 2nd Global Iron Deficiency Day on November 26, 2016, Vifor Pharma reaffirms its commitment to further educate people and healthcare professionals to recognise the symptoms of the disease.

Link to website:

For further information, please contact:

Media Relations:
Beatrix Benz, Head of Global Communications & Public Affairs
Tel.: +41 58 851 80 16

Vifor Pharma, a company of the Galenica Group, is a world leader in the discovery, development, manufacturing and marketing of pharmaceutical products for the treatment of iron deficiency. The company also offers a diversified portfolio of prescription medicines as well as over-the-counter (OTC) products. Vifor Pharma, headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, has an increasingly global presence and a broad network of affiliates and partners around the world.
For more information about Vifor Pharma and its parent company Galenica, please visit and


1. WHO. Global Health Risks: Mortality and Burden of Disease Attributable to Selected Major Risks. 2009 Available from:
/GlobalHealthRisks_report_Front.pdf [Accessed September 2016]

2. Peyrin-Biroulet L, et al. Am J Clin Nutr. 2015;102:1585-94

3. Clark SF Nutr Clin Pract 2008; 23; 128 DOI: 10.1177/0884533608314536

4. Post JB Int Urol Nephrol. 2006; 38:719-723

5. Okonko DO J Am Coll Cardiology 2011; Vol. 58, No. 12, 2011

6. Ponikowski P, et al. Eur Heart J 2016;37:2129-200

7. Stein J et al.,. Anemia and iron deficiency in gastrointestinal and liver conditions. World J Gastroenterol 2016 Sep 21; 22(35): 7908-7925

8. Caramelo L, Mezzacasa A and Kassebaum NJ. Iron Deficiency. Understanding perceptions of sufferers and the general public. EHA 21st Annual Congress, 9-12 June 2016, Copenhagen, Denmark

9. Caramelo L, Mezzacasa A and Mansour D. Iron Deficiency. Impact of iron deficiency on QoL and work capacity. EHA 21st Annual Congress, 9-12 June 2016, Copenhagen, Denmark


Press Release (PDF)