Global eradication of polio is one of the foundation’s core priorities. Since 1988, immunization efforts have reduced the number of polio cases worldwide by more than 99 percent. A cornerstone of the global polio eradication strategy is the goal of reaching all children in the first year of life in the highest-risk countries with multiple doses of oral polio vaccine (OPV). This cannot be achieved without adequate and affordable supplies of OPV.
To meet the demand for OPV and drive down the cost, we invested in a Chinese biopharmaceutical company in 2011 to support the expansion of its OPV production from 80 million to 240 million doses annually. We made an additional investment to help strengthen operations in the company’s production facilities which led to its bi-valent OPV product receiving WHO prequalification at the end of 2017.