November 10, 2009
Pharmaceutical Giant Donating H1N1 Vaccines To Poor Countries
GlaxoSmithKline announced on Tuesday that they are giving 50 million doses of the swine flu vaccine to the World Health Organization, who will then give the medicines to developing countries in need.
The British pharmaceutical company has partnered with WHO and other health establishments to get the shipments of the H1N1 vaccine into the mail before December, they said in a statement.
"GSK is committed to supporting governments and health authorities around the world in their efforts to protect their populations against this pandemic," said GSK chief executive Andrew Witty stated.
WHO director Margaret Chan added that this gift of vaccines is considered a "very generous donation."
"This is a real gesture of global solidarity towards those who would not otherwise be able to have access to the vaccine. WHO will now work to see that these vaccines are distributed to those who need them," she added.
GSK is also going to market the vaccine to poorer countries at a much cheaper price, the drugs company said, and is discussing with WHO about contributing their antiviral drug, Relenza, to their donation.
5,700 people have passed away around the world since the A(H1N1) virus emerged in April, says WHO statistics.
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