Antiseptic gel for newborn umbilical cord infections earns approval
The gel, developed by GSK and Save the Children, contains chlorhexidine. Chlorhexidine is considered a “life-saving commodity” that could help to save an estimated 422,000 lives over a period of five years.
“The positive opinion for this reformulation of chlorhexidine is an exciting step forward in our efforts to help prevent newborn deaths from infections,” Ali Forder, program director for policy and quality at Save the Children, said. “This formulation has been designed with some of the toughest settings in mind and our expertise of working with health workers and communities has meant that this product can be used in challenging contexts. Our innovative partnership with GSK goes beyond the traditional corporate-charity model, and this is a good example of how together we can achieve better outcomes for children. Save the Children will continue to work closely with governments to ensure children have access to quality health care and essential medicines.”
This approval is a significant step forward for GSK and Save the Children: the two organizations developed their partnership to save lives of children who live in the poorest communities in the world.
“A bright idea from one of our scientists -- who recognized we could transform an ingredient in our mouthwash into a medicine -- has come to fruition thanks to the power of partnership,” Patrick Vallance, president of pharmaceutical research and development at GSK, said. “By combining our development and manufacturing expertise, in both pharmaceuticals and consumer health, with Save the Children’s on-the-ground knowledge of local health care systems and communities, we have developed a simple gel to help protect vulnerable newborns from infection. This is a real illustration of how collaboration can stimulate imaginative responses to tough challenges.”
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