Seqirus, a global leader in the prevention of influenza, announced today that it is donating 22,500 doses of influenza vaccine to the Texas Department of State Health Services, the appropriate state public health authority spearheading the deployment of the donation.
The company’s donation consists of premium influenza vaccines – a cell-based flu vaccine, manufactured in the company’s state-of-the art Holly Springs facility in North Carolina, and an adjuvanted vaccine specifically developed for people 65 and older. The donation will be used in vaccination programs for people living in local shelters.
"Our thoughts are with the thousands of people in Texas affected by the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey, and we stand ready to help Floridians as Hurricane Irma bears down on Florida,” said Gordon Naylor, President at Seqirus. “Protecting communities from diseases is our purpose and the reason we come to work every day. During this difficult time, we are grateful for the people working tirelessly on relief efforts and glad that we can make a contribution.”
The majority of doses supplied by Seqirus were manufactured at the company’s state-of-the-art facility in Holly Springs, North Carolina. Seqirus built the facility in partnership with the U.S. government with the express goal of protecting Americans from influenza pandemics. It is the largest influenza vaccine manufacturing facility in the country and the only site to produce influenza vaccine using cell-based viral technology.
Influenza can lead to clinical symptoms varying from mild to moderate respiratory illness to severe complications, hospitalization and, in some cases, death.1 The CDC estimates that 310,000 people in the United States were hospitalized due to influenza-related complications during the 2015-2016 influenza season.2
“Even in normal conditions, influenza is a highly contagious disease that can cause severe illness and life-threatening complications,” said Russell Basser, Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President of Research & Development at Seqirus. “In the aftermath of a natural disaster of this magnitude, many people find temporary housing and live in close quarters, which greatly increases the risk of infection.”
“The doses of influenza vaccine donated by Seqirus will ensure that more displaced Texans will receive preventive treatment more quickly and effectively,” added Dr. Basser.
CSL Limited, Seqirus’ parent company, is also supporting hurricane relief efforts through its other affiliates with a presence in the United States. Florida-based subsidiary CSL Plasma has made a corporate donation of $150,000 to the United Way of Greater Houston Relief Fund. Also, for every dollar donated by an employee, CSL will match the contribution in full. For more information, visit www.seqirus-US.com.
Seqirus is part of CSL Limited (ASX:CSL), headquartered in Melbourne, Australia. The CSL Group of companies employs more than 16,000 people with operations in more than 30 countries.
Seqirus was established on 31 July 2015 following CSL’s acquisition of the Novartis influenza vaccines business and its subsequent integration with bioCSL. As the second largest influenza vaccine provider in the world, Seqirus is a major contributor to the prevention of influenza globally and a transcontinental partner in pandemic preparedness.
Seqirus operates state-of-the-art production facilities in the U.S., the UK and Australia, and manufactures influenza vaccines using both egg-based and cell-based technologies. It has leading R&D capabilities, a broad portfolio of differentiated products and a commercial presence in more than 20 countries.
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1. CDC. “Key Facts About Influenza (Flu).” Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/keyfacts.htm. Accessed July 2017.
2. CDC. “Seasonal Influenza-Associated Hospitalizations in the United States.” Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/qa/hospital.htm. Accessed July 2017.