As we look ahead to spring, which is always a busy time for all of us at CSL Behring, we join the hereditary angioedema (HAE) and rare disease communities around the world in celebrating the 10th international Rare Disease Day on February 28. Every year at this time, we proudly join with hundreds of patient organizations worldwide to raise awareness of rare diseases and their impact on people’s lives.
There are upwards of 7,000 rare diseases, with approved treatments for only 5% of these. HAE, a rare and potentially life-threatening genetic condition, occurs in about 1 in 10,000 to 1 in 50,000 people. People with HAE can have considerable swelling episodes referred to as angioedema, which can affect many parts of the body, including the face, abdomen, larynx and extremities.
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.
Known for our life-changing biotherapies, CSL Behring is one of a number of companies that benefit from the Swiss model of vocational education.
By Jasmin Joller
December 22, 2016
At our manufacturing facility in Bern, we’ve been receiving visits from dignitaries and business heads from around the world such as U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez, President of Poland Andrzej Duda, Microsoft President Brad Smith and the European-Australian Business Council.
Usually we attract attention because of our world-class biotherapies, or because we’ve been recognized as an employer of choice in Switzerland. Now we’re attracting attention because it’s widely recognized that Switzerland has set quite a standard for occupational learning programs, and CSL Behring is a shining example of that standard.
I’m often asked, “What makes CSL Behring a great place to work?” For me, it’s about our patient centricity and company purpose. We develop and deliver innovative specialty biotherapies, helping people with life-threatening conditions live full lives. That’s an inspiring responsibility. Our CEO Paul Perreault encourages us to work each day as if people’s lives depend on us ‒ because they do. I can’t think of a better reason for coming to work every day.
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