For the past six years, Merck has maintained its commitment. It has delivered more than 30 million doses to the nations of West Africa, Burkina Faso, Côte d`Ivoire, Mali and Sao Tome and Principe. Now Merck is withdrawing from this agreement. A spokesman for Gavi, a charity that negotiates the price of vaccines for poor countries, says Merck will not be able to provide all the doses it has promised this year and next. In 2020, it will stop delivering the vaccine to West Africa. GSK says it won`t make up for Merck`s lack. In an email to NPR, a Merck spokesperson wrote that the company could no longer sell the vaccine in West Africa because it provides, quote, „supply shortages“ such as „unexpected manufacturing problems and packaging problems.“ NPR: Merck withdraws from agreement to provide life-saving vaccines to millions of children „Pharmaceutical giant Merck and Co. Inc. is ending a long-term agreement to provide a life-saving vaccine for children in West Africa.
At the same time, the company began sending the vaccine to China, where it will probably be sold at a much higher price. The vaccine is used for a deadly form of diarrhea called rotavirus, which kills about 200,000 small children and babies each year. Merck`s decision means Merck will not meet its obligation to supply its RotaTeq rotavirus vaccine to four low-income countries in 2018 and 2019, said Gavi, the vaccination alliance. By 2020, the company will completely stop delivering its vaccine. … In 2011, Merck agreed to sell its rotavirus vaccine via Gavi to few countries, about $3.50 per dose. … [In China, the dose of e-aï will probably cost…
more than $40… (Doucleff, 11/1). For six years, pharmaceutical companies complied with these agreements. GSK has supplied nearly 220 million doses in 42 countries around the world. And Merck has delivered more than 30 million doses in four West African countries: Burkina Faso, Côte d`Ivoire, Mali and Sao Tome and Principe. Pharmaceutical giant Merck will withdraw from separate economic incentive agreements with the city of Austin and the state of Texas for its Austin-based IT hub. Pharmaceutical giant Merck and Co. Inc. is ending a long-term agreement to provide a life-saving vaccine for children in West Africa. Pharmaceutical giant Merck is pulling out of a deal to sell a life-saving vaccine to poor countries at a reduced cost. At the same time, the company has just sent the vaccine to China, where it is probably sold at a much higher price.
As NPR`s Michaeleen Doucleff explains, exiting can put millions of babies at risk for rotavirus. A warning — this story contains graphic details. In the face of such supply shortages, we are evaluating all possible options to determine how best we can meet the agreement we have with UNICEF and GAVI-eligible countries, while respecting the binding contractual obligations we have with other countries. The product we have assigned to China is what has been allowed to be used in that country in order to fulfill the conditions of a binding agreement that we signed with a local vaccine company in 2012. As you can certainly understand, the details of this contract are the property of Merck; As such, we cannot confirm the number of doses or discuss the price. Here in the United States, it costs about $200 per course. Already in 2011, the two companies that manufacture the vaccine, Merck and GlaxoSmithKline, agreed to reduce the price of poor countries to about $10 per price. Merck is committed to supplying the vaccine in four West African countries. This agreement fits perfectly into one of Merck`s missions to increase access to medicines worldwide. Merck highlighted this in a promotional video. At a conference on November 1, 2018, Ken Frazier, Merck`s CEO, said the drug maker had not „deââred“ the Agreement on supply to West African countries, Stat News reported.