Novartis has announced that it will send the equivalent of over $2.5m in immediate emergency aid and medicines to victims of the recent earthquake in Haiti.

The support includes direct financial aid to relief agencies working in Haiti as well as donations of essential medicines, including antibiotics and pain-relieving drugs.

Novartis chairman and CEO Dr Daniel Vasella said that the destructive force of the earthquake in Haiti has brought immense suffering to the nation and its people.

“Our experience of providing support in the wake of natural disasters has proven successful, ensuring that we can get aid to the people in need fast and efficiently,” Vasella said.

Novartis has also encouraged its employees to make donations, which the company will match, and has also pledged to work with authorities to identify areas of longer-term support for people affected by natural disasters such as this.