March 2, 2000

Today, President Clinton Will Meet With Leaders of Industry, Foundations, and International Organizations to Announce New Partnerships to Develop and Deliver Vaccines For Diseases -- Including HIV/AIDS, Malaria, and Tuberculosis For Developing Countries. In his State of the Union Address, the President said, "I ask the private sector and our partners around the world to join us in embracing this cause. We can save millions of lives together, and we ought to do it." At this meeting, key leaders of pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, international organizations, foundations, and the public health community will endorse the President's Millennium Vaccine Initiative, released last month, and announce new commitments to develop and deliver vaccines to developing countries. The President will also call upon Secretary Shalala to convene a meeting of experts from industry, government, and academia to address impediments to vaccine development in the private sector and to strengthen public-private partnerships.

The President And The CEOs Of The Four Largest Vaccine Manufacturers Will Announce Unprecedented Levels Of Corporate Support To Vaccinate The World's Children. Today, industry will respond to the President's call with important new steps as CEOs of the four largest vaccines manufacturers Merck and Co., Inc., American Home Products Corporation, Glaxo SmithKline Beecham, and Aventis Pharma AG will announce that they will donate millions of doses of state-of-the-art vaccines worth more than $150 million to those in the developing world and make a renewed commitment to step up research and development on vaccines for HIV/AIDS and malaria.

These Private Sector Commitments Build On The Administration's Millennium Vaccine Initiative, Announced by the President In His State of the Union Address. The major components of the Millennium Vaccine Initiative include:

The President Will Also Recognize the Unprecedented Contributions From The Philanthropic Community. This includes a $750 million contribution from The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to the vaccine purchase fund of the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization. The President also praised new models for public-private partnerships, including the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative, which announced that it will invest more than $10 million this year to triple the number of AIDS vaccine candidates moving toward trials.

The Scope Of The Problem of Infectious Disease In Developing Countries:

Details of the Corporate Commitments Include:

The President's Millennium Vaccine Initiative:

In his State of the Union address, President Clinton called for concerted international action to combat infectious diseases, which kill more than eight million children worldwide and orphan millions more. Recognizing that vaccines are a critical, cost-effective weapon in the fight against these diseases, the President announced a multi-part Millennium Vaccine Initiative:

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