CSL Behring and its subsidiary, CSL Plasma, join the Plasma Protein Therapeutics Association (PPTA) in saluting the contributions of plasma donors during International Plasma Awareness Week (IPAW), celebrated October 12-18.
The week-long observance, which is sponsored by PPTA and its member-companies, recognizes the critical role donors play in ensuring a reliable and secure source of human plasma as worldwide demand continues to rise. Plasma donations are used to make plasma protein therapies for the treatment of rare and serious diseases such as bleeding disorders and immune deficiencies.
CSL Plasma operates one of the largest plasma collection networks in the world and has been expanding its network of centers to keep up with the growing demand for plasma-derived therapies. In just the past year, CSL Plasma has opened 18 centers in the United States in Alabama, Missouri, Georgia, Arizona, Florida, Washington, Illinois, North Carolina, Michigan, Mississippi, South Carolina, Minnesota, Texas and Oregon.
CSL Plasma Senior Vice President and General Manager, Randy Furby, said IPAW provides an opportunity to raise global awareness of plasma protein therapies and rare diseases, as well as thank donors for their contributions, which are so essential to the health and well-being of patients with rare diseases worldwide.
"The rapid expansion of our network of collection centers reflects CSL Behring and CSL Plasma’s commitment to ensuring the continuous supply of plasma that is necessary to providing high-quality, lifesaving therapies to the rare disease community," Furby added.
Because plasma-derived therapies are crucial for patients’ well-being and health, an appropriate supply of products is absolutely essential and depends on a sufficient supply of collected plasma. The current collection system, which includes voluntary compensated donations, allows for an appropriate product supply that would otherwise be difficult if not impossible to achieve.
Carl Schlacht exemplifies the importance of maintaining an appropriate supply of plasma-derived therapies. Diagnosed with primary immune deficiency before his first birthday, he didn’t let a weakened immune system stop him from pursuing his dream of becoming a professional Supercross racer. Now Carl travels throughout the United States, speaking to groups of young people with immune system disorders, and encouraging them to follow their dreams.
"You can be anything you want to be," Carl tells young audiences, "whether it’s a professional athlete, a chemist or a teacher. You are not defined by your immune deficiency." Carl is quick to recognize the lifesaving contributions of plasma donors, which are used to make therapies to treat immune system disorders. "Without the plasma they’re willing to donate, my life, our lives, would be very different. I can’t thank plasma donors enough."
CSL Plasma is celebrating IPAW 2014 by holding a variety of activities in its centers nationwide to promote greater understanding and appreciation among patients, employees and donors. CSL Plasma staff is personally thanking donors in the centers for their time, and emphasizing the impact their donations have on patients’ lives. Other activities focus on educating community and civic leaders about donors and the economic impact of a plasma center on the community. CSL Plasma centers on average infuse between $5 and $6 million directly into the local economy in wages and donor compensation.
About CSL Behring
CSL Behring is a leader in the plasma protein therapeutics industry. Committed to saving lives and improving the quality of life for people with rare and serious diseases, the company manufactures and markets a range of plasma-derived and recombinant therapies worldwide.
CSL Behring therapies are used around the world to treat coagulation disorders including hemophilia and von Willebrand disease, primary immune deficiencies, hereditary angioedema and inherited respiratory disease, and neurological disorders in certain markets. The company’s products are also used in cardiac surgery, organ transplantation, burn treatment and to prevent hemolytic diseases in the newborn.
CSL Behring operates one of the world’s largest plasma collection networks, CSL Plasma. CSL Behring is a global biopharmaceutical company and a member of the CSL Group of companies. The parent company, CSL Limited (ASX:CSL), is headquartered in Melbourne, Australia. For more information, visit http://www.cslbehring.com/.