The World Health Organization (WHO) has awarded prequalification for global use of GlaxoSmithKline’s (GSK) Arepanrix adjuvanted H1N1 influenza pandemic vaccine.

The WHO prequalification project is a service provided by the WHO designed to facilitate access to medicines, especially in developing countries, that meet unified standards of quality and safety.

GSK Biologicals president Jean Stéphenne said that the WHO prequalification is a key step in ensuring that developing countries can be supplied with Arepanrix.

“It is clearly our collective responsibility to ensure that we do everything possible to provide vaccine supplies to these countries,” Stéphenne said.

In November this year GSK announced that it had signed an agreement with the WHO to donate 50 million doses of its adjuvanted pandemic H1N1 influenza vaccine to developing countries.