US to donate 420,000 Tamiflu courses to PAHO to fight novel H1N1

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced that the United States will provide 420,000 treatment courses of Tamiflu (Oseltamavir) to the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) to fight the novel H1N1 influenza in Latin America and the Caribbean. Secretary Sebelius commented, “The U.S. is committed to supporting and enhancing the health security in the region by reducing transmission and severity of illness. Viruses know no borders. The U.S. recognizes that a novel virus such as the H1N1 is a burden borne by all nations, and all of us have a responsibility to help support one another in the face of this challenge.”  HHS said that on June 23 it received a request from PAHO to partner with the U.S. government to increase the PAHO stockpile of Tamiflu in the regional stockpile available for Latin America and the Caribbean countries. PAHO is working to ensure that its member countries have the capacity and resources to respond to outbreaks of H1N1. HHS holds approximately 50 million courses of antiviral medications in the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS). In April, HHS deployed 11 million treatment courses from the SNS to the states across the country to fight the H1N1 influenza. Since then, HHS has purchased antiviral drugs to replenish the SNS along with an additional 2 million treatment courses.

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