Monday, April 24, 2017

Pfizer says accelerating access to vaccines in developing countries

Logo taken from Business Wire

The bio-pharmaceutical company, Pfizer, has announced it is increasing access to immunizations in countries that carry the greatest proportion of global burden of pneumococcal disease

It said its dedication can help prevent diseases and save lives, in a statement on this week.

“In support of this commitment, and to help address the practical constraints experienced by health workers operating in many Gavi countries, Pfizer [has] developed Prevenar 13® in the Multi-Dose Vial-MDV presentation (4 doses per vial),” the company announced.

“This new presentation will help to significantly reduce storage requirements and shipping costs in communities with health systems that are still developing.”

The company said the MDV presentation received a positive opinion from the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in April 2016.

Subsequently the MDV was pre-qualified by the WHO in July 2016, it added.

In January this year, Pfizer launched the new multi-dose vial- MDV which was prequalified in accordance with WHO’s ‘open container policy.’

It said the which has ‘open container’ attributes, allows for the fourth dose to be used for up to 28 days after the first dose in drawn and providing the recommended cold storage requirements have been met.

To ensure the efficient use of the multi-dose vial, Pfizer is supporting Gavi countries with a refresher training of trainers programme on a variety of immunization topics including the proper handling of multi dose vials with open container policy.

Pfizer partnered with AMP Services, an organization dedicated to providing the tools to promote preventive medicine and public health worldwide, to execute the training of trainers sessions in 16 countries in 2017.

During the first four months of launch, fifteen countries have received the new MDV and nine of these have completed the training of trainers programme. These training sessions were well received by the national and regional trainers.

“We developed training materials that are easy to use for health workers and allow for interactive learning process at all levels”, Georgiana Golodnius, Training Project Manager of AMP Services said.

“In the countries where we have implemented training of the trainers, 97.3% of the participants think the developed training tools are useful and relevant.”

Mr. Mwagomba, trainer in Malawi said: “Indeed we learnt a lot from the training and I feel the knowledge gained will be used to train other health workers in the country.”

Pfizer said it is committed to constant innovation and development to ensure that the challenges many face throughout the world- geographical, economical and operational- can and will be met.


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