Geneva, Switzerland (BBN)- A pharmaceutical company is going to donate 50 million doses of the pandemic H1N1 vaccine to the United Nations public health arm, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced on Tuesday.
Under a new agreement signed with GlaxoSmithKline, the WHO expects to receive the first shipments of the vaccine by the end of November this year.
The WHO has a list of 95 developing countries that are eligible to receive donated vaccines, and aims to secure enough vaccines to cover 10 per cent of the population of these countries.
“We welcome this very generous donation by GlaxoSmithKline, which will go to protect the health of the world’s poorest people,” WHO Director-General Margaret said after signing the agreement at the agency’s Headquarters in Geneva.
As of November 1, 2009, there have been more than 482,000 laboratory confirmed cases of pandemic influenza H1N1 worldwide and over 6,000 deaths reported to the WHO.
“As many countries have stopped counting individual cases, particularly of milder illness, the actual number of people contracting the virus is likely to be higher than the number of confirmed cases,” the U.N. health agency said.
BBN/SS/SI/AD-11November09-2:09 am (BST)