Every day, more than 220 women around the world die from postpartum hemorrhage, or excessive bleeding after childbirth. Most of these tragic deaths can be prevented if women have timely access to a skilled health provider and a well-equipped health facility.
The standard treatment for preventing and treating excessive bleeding after childbirth is a medicine called oxytocin. Oxytocin must be refrigerated, yet in many parts of the world, access to electricity and refrigeration is inconsistent and expensive, jeopardizing the quality of this life-saving medicine.
Merck for Mothers, Ferring Pharmaceuticals, and the World Health Organization (WHO) are part of a unique public private-private partnership working to invent a heat-stable solution by studying a new formulation of a medicine called carbetocin to prevent excessive bleeding after childbirth. Access to a heat-stable formulation in developing countries where it is needed most could help health providers save lives.
The WHO is conducting a clinical trial in 10 countries to evaluate the medicine’s effectiveness. To date, nearly 30,000 women have enrolled in the trial and results are expected in 2018.
Argentina, Egypt, India, Kenya, Nigeria, Singapore,
South Africa, Thailand, Uganda, and the United Kingdom.
As we continue to develop this life-saving medicine, we will work together to ensure that, once its effectiveness has been established and approved by the appropriate regulatory bodies, it is available at an affordable and sustainable price, and accessible to countries that suffer from the highest burdens of maternal mortality.