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Pfizer teams up with snowboarder in meningitis campaign

Amy Purdy won bronze medal at 2014 Paralympic games
Amy Purdy, Pfizer meningitis campaign

Pfizer has enlisted Paralympic athlete and meningitis survivor Amy Purdy to raise awareness of the importance of the meningitis vaccine.

The Take Action Against Meningitis campaign encourages parents of teenagers and young adults to talk to a healthcare professional about how they can protect their child from meningococcal meningitis.

For each pledge a parent makes pharma company Pfizer will donate up to $20,000 to Adaptive Action Sports, a not-for-profit organisation co-founded by Purdy to help create opportunities for individuals with physical disabilities to get involved in action sports.

Purdy contracted meningococcal meningitis when she was 19, leading to the loss of both of her legs below the knee, the removal of her spleen and a kidney transplant.

Despite these disadvantages Purdy took up snowboarding when she received her prosthetic legs, achieving many successes including a gold medal at the 2011 New Zealand Winter Games in the para snowboard cross event and a bronze medal in the 2014 Paralympic Games in Sochi, Russia.

After competing at the Paralympic Games Purdy was a contestant on the US television show Dancing with the Stars, finishing in second place.

“We all have challenges and many are surmountable,” said Purdy. “My mum and I are excited to be part of Take Action Against Meningitis and are challenging parents to learn more about meningococcal meningitis.”

Pfizer's recent developments in meningitis include the FDA approval of its meningitis B vaccine Trumenba in October this year, ahead of a decision on Novartis' rival vaccine Bexsero. Meningitis B accounts for around 40% of all meningitis cases in the US.

Pfizer also recently added to its portfolio with a $635m deal to acquire two Baxter vaccines, namely its meningitis C product NeisVac-C and FSME-IMMUN/TicoVac, which helps protect against tick-borne encephalitis (TBE).

Article by
Thomas Meek

18th December 2014

From: Marketing

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