WFH Celebrates Milestone in Distributing Bleeding Disorder Therapies

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by Vanda Pinto, PhD |

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The World Federation of Hemophilia (WFH) is commemorating having successfully distributed, since 1996, over one billion international units (IUs) of factor and non-factor replacement therapies for people with inherited bleeding disorders, such as hemophilia, through its Humanitarian Aid Program.

Donations from the program have improved the quality of life for more than 20,000 people with bleeding disorders in 110 countries. Despite difficulties raised by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the WFH was able to deliver 146 million IUs of treatments around the world.

The WFH Humanitarian Aid Program is supported by several pharmaceutical companies, including Sanofi Genzyme, Sobi, Bayer, Roche, Grifols, CSL Behring, and Takeda.

“On behalf of the WFH and the bleeding disorders community, we thank our sponsors for their generous support,” the WFH stated on its website. “We are proud of what we have accomplished together, and we look forward to continuing our collaboration with you in the future.”

Many people with hemophilia throughout the world have limited access to diagnosis or adequate care. As a result, children with bleeding disorders living in impoverished countries may experience chronic pain and often severe disability.

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The WFH is a nonprofit organization that works to improve the lives of people with hemophilia and other bleeding disorders, especially in developing countries. Through the its humanitarian aid program, the WFH provides treatment for acute bleeds, surgeries, and prophylaxis or preventive care.

In April, Takeda, a “contributor” level sponsor, agreed to provide the WFH with 15 million IUs of factor VIII (FVIII), and five million IUs of bypassing agents, every year for the next five years.

FVIII is the clotting protein that is missing or defective in people with hemophilia A, the most common form of the disorder. These patients are usually treated with replacement therapies that provide the missing FVIII, or with bypassing agents that promote blood clotting by alternative mechanisms. Replacement therapies and bypassing agents can be provided on-demand to treat bleeds, or prophylactically to prevent them.

Also this year, Grifols committed to donating a minimum of 240 million IUs of blood clotting factors, specifically FVIII and FIX — the one that is missing in people with hemophilia B. The contribution will commence in 2022 and extend until 2030 with the goal of treating approximately 3,000 bleeding disorder patients per year in developing countries.