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QUÉBEC, July 15, 2022 /CNW/ – Today, the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Health, and the Honourable Filomena Tassi, Minister of Public Services and Procurement, announced that the Government of Canada has signed a new contract with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) to support sustained influenza pandemic readiness.

The Government of Canada maintains pandemic influenza vaccine preparedness contracts in the event of an influenza pandemic and has contracted with GSK to supply both pandemic and seasonal influenza vaccines since 2001. Influenza pandemics are unpredictable but recurring events that occur when a novel influenza virus strain emerges, spreads widely, and causes an outbreak. They historically have occurred every 11-40 years, with the most recent one being H1N1 in 2009.

As of July 1, 2022, GSK is reserving capacity to produce and deliver domestic pandemic influenza vaccines for an initial period of four years with the option to extend for up to five additional one-year periods. The contract will include an option to procure up to 80 million doses of influenza vaccine should an influenza pandemic occur. The contract also guarantees the supply of a minimum of 4 million doses of seasonal influenza vaccine annually for use in publicly funded vaccination programs. First deliveries of seasonal influenza vaccine under the contract are scheduled for September and October 2022.

The Government of Canada is committed to protecting the health and safety of everyone in Canada. This contract will help ensure timely access to seasonal influenza and pandemic influenza vaccines if needed. Securing this capacity is an important part of Canada’s ongoing pandemic preparedness efforts while the response to the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

Quotes

“Immunization is the most effective way to prevent disease and death from influenza, and Canada has made a commitment to secure continued access to domestically sourced pandemic influenza vaccine. This contract renews our longstanding relationship with GlaxoSmithKline to ensure that we are prepared to protect everyone in Canada in the case of pandemic influenza.”

The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos
Minister of Health 

“As we continue to respond to, and learn from, the COVID-19 pandemic, the importance of vaccine preparedness is reinforced now more than ever. With this in mind, we are pleased to continue to support sustained pandemic readiness in Canada by securing access to domestically sourced pandemic influenza vaccines, as well as seasonal influenza doses ahead of the fall flu season.”

The Honourable Filomena Tassi
Minister of Public Services and Procurement

“Our government is committed to rebuilding our biomanufacturing capacity to secure the domestic supply of vital medicines that will protect the health and safety of all Canadians. With this announcement today, we are ensuring that Canada is well-prepared for future pandemics, all while creating good-paying jobs at home.”

The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne
Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry 

“We are proud to continue to work with the Government of Canada to supply our vaccines supporting Canada’s pandemic preparedness and fight against seasonal influenza. COVID-19 has shown the world the importance of immunization and pandemic preparedness. This agreement reserves future production and delivery of pandemic and seasonal influenza vaccines allowing for a rapid response to help protect Canadians.”

Peter Fonyodi
Vaccines Business Unit Head, GSK Canada

Quick Facts

  • Since 2001, the Government has contracted with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), or its predecessors in Canada, to secure a domestic supply of pandemic influenza vaccine sufficient to vaccinate the entire Canadian population.
  • Seasonal influenza epidemics occur annually. The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) monitors influenza activity throughout the year and has continued to monitor influenza activity throughout the COVID-19 pandemic through its FluWatch surveillance program.
  • The flu vaccine is the best way to prevent the flu and reduce the likelihood and severity of flu-related complications, even in healthy people. It can protect you if you are exposed to the influenza virus, either by preventing you from getting the flu or reducing your risk of becoming seriously ill.

Associated Links

Flu (influenza): Pandemic flu
Flu (influenza): Symptoms and treatment
Flu (influenza): Get your flu shot
Seasonal Influenza (Flu) Vaccination Coverage Survey Results, 2021-2022

SOURCE Public Health Agency of Canada

View original content: http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/July2022/15/c5945.html

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