7. June 2011 12:45
Members of the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI) have pledged to reduce the price of vaccines in developing countries.
Serum Institute of India and Panacea Biotec have both agreed to drop the price of their pentavalent vaccine (pictured), whilst GSK and Merck also promised similar deals.
Andrew Witty, GAVI Chief Executive, called on pharma companies to be “in step with society” and base goals and business models around issues that address global health needs.
The offers are in response to a tender by the United Nations Children’s Fund, which uses the majority of the vaccines funded by GAVI.
The GSK deal will see its vaccine against diarrhoeal disease in the poorest countries sold for £1.50 a dose, a twentieth of its £30 price in western and developed countries. Merck will also offer its rotavirus vaccine at discounted prices.
“I hope this will enable millions of children to receive this vaccine,” Andrew Witty wrote in the Times.
“Importantly, this offer is sustainable, because we are recouping the cost of goods and manufacture.”
GAVI donors are set to meet in London later this month, where Prime Minister David Cameron will promote a way to raise a further £2.25 billion in global aid.