This year I again had the privilege of performing community service along with colleagues from CSL Behring on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service. This opportunity was made possible through a giving back initiative supported and encouraged by our company.
We traveled from our offices in King of Prussia, Pa. to Cradles to Crayons, an organization based in Conshohocken, Pa. that does fantastic work providing children from birth to age 12, living in homeless or low-income situations, with the essential items they need to thrive. We spent our time cleaning and sorting shoes, preparing them for the little (and some not so little) feet of the children who would be receiving them.
It was a rewarding experience and a chance to take time out from our normal work day to reflect on the needs that exist in our community. Many of us are fortunate enough to not have to worry about how we’re going to get our next pair of shoes when the soles start to wear, or how we’ll keep our children warm when the temperature drops. But many children and parents in our communities are not as fortunate.
We often say innovation is in our DNA at CSL. But without financial and scientific commitment to a dynamic R&D program, innovation would not be possible. The long-term sustainability of CSL requires a full R&D pipeline of high-quality prospective products. This is why CSL has invested $2.3 billion in R&D over the last five years and why we support research teams all over the world. It is also the reason we are committed to identifying and supporting the best and brightest biomedical researchers in Australia.
Our commitment to R&D extends to the broader scientific community beyond the CSL laboratories. An example of this is the CSL Centenary Fellowship program. This $AUD 25 million program awards two, five-year $1.25 million fellowships each year to early/mid-career Australian medical researchers, who are working on world-class discovery or translational research in the areas of rare and serious diseases, immunology and inflammation.
World PI Week is held each year to raise awareness and improve diagnosis and treatment of primary immunodeficiency diseases (PI). It also provides an opportunity to draw attention to a related therapeutic area, which is the third leading cause of death worldwide – chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
COPD results in approximately 700,000 hospitalizations a year in the U.S. alone according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Although COPD is historically associated with smoking, 20–30% of COPD patients never smoked. Since the 1980s, research has increasingly pointed to an interrelationship between COPD and PI that may hold the key to ameliorating COPD. Continue reading →
CSL Behring’s Jens Oltrogge recently sat down with Alain Baumann to talk about World Hemophilia Day and some of the challenges facing the bleeding disorder community.
April, 11 2016
How did World Hemophilia Day come into being?
The World Federation of Hemophilia (WFH) established World Hemophilia Day in 1989 to bring the bleeding disorder community together on April 17, the birthday of WFH founder Frank Schnabel. World Hemophilia Day is observed around the world annually. The goal is to bring the bleeding disorders community together and increase the awareness of hemophilia and other inherited bleeding disorders.
We often hear the question, ‘Why do drugs cost as much as they do?‘ In the U.S., the cost of drugs has become a campaign issue for some Presidential candidates, and Congressional task forces and committees have been exploring this question. Legislation has been introduced in some states to limit drug prices. And in Europe, there are steps toward joint negotiation of prices among some nations.
But what is often missing in statements about the cost of medicines and in proposed solutions is an answer to the fundamental question, ‘What is the value of pharmaceutical products to patients and the healthcare system versus the cost?‘ This is where the focus needs to be placed so that appropriate policy decisions can be made based on patient benefits, savings that drugs provide to the healthcare system, economic value, and the need to sustain valuable biopharmaceutical innovation, rather than a singular focus on drug costs. Continue reading →
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