2 Companies to produce anti-snake venom
A Ghana based vaccine manufacturer, Atlantic LifeSciences Limited, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with a leading Indian biological company, Vins Bioproducts, to produce anti-snake venom in Ghana.
Per the agreement, Vins Bioproducts will supply bulk quantities of the anti-snake venom for Atlantic LifeSciences to fill and finish production of the serum in Ghana.
It is expected that the deal between the two entities will reduce the huge foreign exchange the government expends on importing anti-snake venom.
Ghana thus will become the first country in West Africa to produce and package anti-snake venom for local use and export.
Present at the signing ceremony was the Presidential Advisor on Health, Dr Anthony Nsiah-Asare, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Foods and Drugs Authority (FDA), Delese Mimi Darko.
Speaking at the signing of the MoU at the National Vaccine Institute, Dr Nsiah –Asare said the production of the anti-snake venom would promote public health in the country and also deepen the government’s efforts to make Ghana the hub of vaccine production in Africa.
“The production of vaccines locally is not a fluke, and the ready-to-fill anti-snake venom bulk is already in the country.
Ghana is steadily becoming a destination for global medical manufacturers,” he said.
The Chief Executive Officer of Atlantic Lifesciences, Dhananjay Tripathi, said snake bite was a neglected condition that had plagued many people, especially those in rural areas.
He said Atlantic Lifesciences was a major player in the importation of anti-snake venom but decided in 2017 to start the local production as part of its drive to boost the Ghanaian economy.
The Executive Director of Vins Bioproducts Limited, Siddarth Daga, said his outfit as a leading producer of vaccines in the world decided to collaborate with Atlantic Lifesciences to bring anti-snake venoms closer to Ghana and the entire African region.
The Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu, in a speech read on his behalf, described the partnership between Atlantic LifeSciences Limited and Vins Bioproducts as a great initiative that would boost the industrialisation agenda of the government.
In a speech read on his behalf, the World Health Organisation (WHO) Country Representative for Ghana, Professor Francis Kasolo, said the country recorded an annual average of about 9,600 snake bites from 2015 to 2019.
He, therefore, lauded Atlantic LifeSciences Limited and Vins Bioproducts for the partnership to help resolve a critical emergency health issue.