The pharmaceutical industry has joined in with the international relief effort to provide much-needed financial and medical aid to Haiti, in the aftermath of the massive earthquake that has left the country devastated.

US company Abbot has committed $1m in initial humanitarian aid including critical pharmaceutical and nutritional products for the country’s immediate health needs.

The company is also working with aid organisations AmeriCares, Direct Relief International and other organisations to help distribute critical antibiotics and nutritional fluids, which are crucial at the early stage of disaster relief.

Amgen has also announced that the company will donate $2m to Haiti relief efforts and Eli Lilly has pledged $250,000 in direct cash contributions.

Half of the Lilly effort will be for short-term relief, with the balance to be donated over the next 12 months to support longer-term rebuilding efforts.

Lilly Foundation president Robert L Smith said that the situation in Haiti is a profound human tragedy.

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“The significant number of casualties and widespread property damage require an urgent and compassionate response. We hope Lilly’s contributions will aid in the recovery efforts,” Smith said.

The earthquake, which struck on Tuesday 12 January and measured 7.2 on the Richter scale, has devastated the country, killing an estimated 50,000 people and leaving more than three million in need of urgent emergency aid.