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Classified in: Business
Subjects: CHI, CSR, DEI

Aflac Foundation Inc. extends commitment to children and families with $1.5 million donation to Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center

Clinical research and sickle cell disease clinic to share in funding

COLUMBUS, Ga., Feb. 14, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Crucial for the development of new treatments and promising therapies for children with cancer and blood disorders such as sickle cell, pediatric oncology and hematology research has been a focus of support for Aflac for nearly 30 years.

In keeping with that commitment, The Aflac Foundation Inc. recently made a $1.5 million donation to The Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, $1 million of which is earmarked for the hospital's clinical research office. The remaining $500,000 will help fill critical needs at Children's Hughes Spalding Sickle Cell Clinic, where more than 85% of patients rely on Medicaid or are uninsured.

"Discovery leading to innovation, hope and better outcomes for patients takes place every day at the Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center," said Kathelen Amos, president of The Aflac Foundation. "Our support of the clinical research enterprise is for the ultimate benefit of patients everywhere, starting with patients right here at the Cancer Center.

"Providing care to more than 2,600 children and young adults with sickle cell each year, the Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center is home to the largest pediatric sickle cell disease program in the country," Amos added. "This funding will help them continue to treat the 'whole child' at the Hughes Spalding clinic through its support of psychologists, social workers and teachers ? crucial positions that are not fully reimbursed by insurance and rely on philanthropy to continue."

One of the most active research institutions in the country for pediatric clinical trial enrollment, the Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center offers patients access to more than 380 clinical studies. Over the past nine years, the program has grown from 44 to 71 full-time research employees and from seven to 28 investigator-initiated clinical trials. Current research surrounding sickle cell disease includes chronic pain management, blood-banking anemia testing, opioid treatment, and stroke biomarkers and prevention.

"The support we receive from the Aflac Foundation is not just a donation; it's a lifeline to many, a beacon of hope, and a catalyst for a healthier future" said Beatrice E. Gee, MD, director of the Aflac Sickle Cell Disease Program and Sickle Cell Disease Comprehensive Pain program at the Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta. Dr. Jason Payne, MD, Hughes Spalding campus director, echoed Dr. Gee's gratitude. "We are grateful for this unwavering commitment to our cause and the countless lives that together, we touch each and every day," he said.

The latest donation by the foundation brings Aflac's support of pediatric cancer and blood disorders to over $173 million since 1995. Additionally, the Aflac Childhood Cancer Foundation Inc. has provided, free of charge, more than 28,000 My Special Aflac Ducks® to children across the United States, Japan and Northern Ireland ages 3 and up diagnosed with cancer or a blood disorder such as sickle cell since 2018. The award-winning robotic, comforting companion that helps patients through medical play, communication, distraction and more was provided to 6,702 patients in 2023 through hospitals, support organizations and a direct-to-family program.

For more information about Aflac's commitment to childhood cancer and blood disorders and the My Special Aflac Duck program, visit www.aflacchildhoodcancer.org.

Aflac Incorporated (NYSE: AFL), a Fortune 500 company, has helped provide financial protection and peace of mind for more than 68 years to millions of policyholders and customers through its subsidiaries in the U.S. and Japan. In the U.S., Aflac is the No. 1 provider of supplemental health insurance products.1 In Japan, Aflac Life Insurance Japan is the leading provider of cancer and medical insurance in terms of policies in force. The company takes pride in being there for its policyholders when they need us most, as well as being included in 2023 in the World's Most Ethical Companies by Ethisphere for 17 consecutive years, Fortune's World's Most Admired Companies for 22 years and Bloomberg's Gender- Equality Index for the fourth consecutive year. In addition, the company became a signatory of the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) in 2021 and has been included in the Dow Jones Sustainability North America Index (2023) for 10 years. To find out how to get help with expenses health insurance doesn't cover, get to know us at aflac.com or aflac.com/espanol. Investors may learn more about Aflac Incorporated and its commitment to corporate social responsibility and sustainability at investors.aflac.com under "Sustainability."

As a child, Sawyer Guillory (right), a sickle cell patient at the Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, received bone marrow from his brother Saxton (left), helping to cure his disease. In 2024, The Aflac Foundation, Inc. gave $1.5 million to the Aflac Cancer Center, including $500,000 to enhance the sickle cell program. The company has given more than $173 million to the cancer and blood disorders center since 1995.

Media contact: Jon Sullivan, 706-763-4813 or [email protected]

Analyst and investor contact: David A. Young, 706-596-3264, 800-235-2667 or [email protected]

1 LIMRA 2022 U.S. Supplemental Health Insurance Total Market Report



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