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A roundup of developments in corporate social responsibility and sustainability from the bio/pharmaceutical industry, its suppliers, and other public and private organizations.
Bayer Healthcare has pledged its support to a tuberculosis (TB) partnership by providing 620,000 tablets of the antibiotic moxifloxacin to the World Health Organization (WHO), which will make the tablets available to China’s national TB program. In particular, the medicine will be used to fight multidrug-resistant TB.The medicine provided by Bayer, moxifloxacin, is a broad-spectrum antibiotic, but is not approved for the treatment of TB or multidrug-resistant TB. However, WHO has included the medicine in treatment group III of its guidelines as part of a second-line TB regimen in patients with confirmed multidrug-resistant TB. The TB partnership, Stop TB, was formed by WHO in 2001 and comprises a network of international organizations, countries, donors from the public and private sectors, and governmental and nongovernmental organizations.
Merck & Co. and the vaccine manufacturer Serum Institute of India have agreed to develop and commercialize a pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) for use in emerging markets and developing countries. The companies will form a product advisory committee to oversee the activities required to develop and seek approval for PCV and World Health Organization prequalification. Under the agreement, Merck, through an affiliate, will receive specific rights to market PCV in certain designated territories, and Serum will receive specific rights in other territories. Both companies will contribute to the development and manufacture of PCV.
Novartis held the eighth annual International Biotechnology Leadership Camp (BioCamp) in late August. The three-day seminar brings biotechnology and business experts together with 60 university students selected from 24 countries and territories. This year’s BioCamp highlighted the growing role of diversity in all aspects of the company, including scientific R&D.
Pfizer has contributed a three-year, $2-million educational grant to the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), a nonprofit alliance of cancer centers, to help support a continuing medical educational program to measure the impact on patient outcomes and clinician performance through data collected in the NCCN Oncology Outcomes Database for Breast Cancer. The goal of the NCCN Opportunities for Improvement program is to develop and implement an outcomes-based performance improvement initiative that uses real practice data from NCCN member institutions. The program will identify tailored educational opportunities, design provider-specific action plans for improvement, and quantify and evaluate the impact of educational interventions on
Pfizer also announced that Caltrate, the company’s calcium and vitamin D supplement, will be a national sponsor of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, a fundraising event for breast cancer awareness and research. The company also is launching “Women Move the World” program to recognize individual accomplishments of women in everyday life .