Vaccine Economics, Access Topic Of WDI Talk

Friday, February 5, 2016

Vaccines save 2.5 millions lives annually according to the World Health Organization, and during the past 15 years major strides have been made in coverage rates for many childhood vaccines in low-income countries.

However, challenges remain as evidenced by the 1.5 million children under the age of 5 who still die each year from vaccine-preventable illnesses. Reducing this number will require progress on a range of economic issues related to vaccine procurement funding, reductions in vaccine costs, and economic sustainability of existing vaccine products.

Ray Cummings, director of market dynamics for PATH, will discuss how the Seattle-based international, nonprofit health organization is addressing these challenges as part of the WDI Global Impact Speaker Series.

Cummings’ Feb. 17 talk, “Economics of Global Vaccine Markets and Current Challenges,” will begin at 5 p.m. in Room R2220 at the Ross School of Business. It is free and open to the public.

“Ray has deep expertise in healthcare technology development and commercialization in both developed and emerging economies,” said Andrea Bare, senior advisor in the WDI Healthcare Initiative’s Market Dynamics group. “He works from the vantage point of several years in biopharmaceuticals business development and partnering, and has brought that expertise to PATH where he has led or contributed to projects for drugs, vaccines, and diagnostics in diseases such as malaria, HIV, and Japanese Encephalitis.”

Cummings’ market dynamics department provides analytical and strategic support for PATH programs that are working with both non-profit and commercial partners to develop new therapies, vaccines and diagnostics for underserved populations around the world. He also has served as commercialization director for PATH’s drug development global program, and senior business officer in its vaccine and pharmaceutical technologies group.

Cummings is the second Global Impact Speaker from PATH. In 2013, Amie Batson, chief strategy officer of PATH, spoke for the WDI speaker series. View a one-on-one interview with Batson here.

Also, PATH has partnered with WDI on several summer internship projects, including 2011 in Bangladesh, 2012 in India, 2013 in Vietnam and Cambodia, and 2015 in the U.S., South Africa, Ghana, and Uganda.

WDI and PATH are currently discussing the scope of a 2016 summer internship with the organization.

Prior to joining PATH in 2009, Cummings held senior business development positions at AVI BioPharma, Inc. (now Sarepta Therapeutics), GD Searle & Co., and Immunex Corp. (now part of Amgen Inc.).

Cummings has a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences from Stanford University, a master’s degree in biochemistry and molecular biology from Harvard University, and an MBA from the University of California, Berkeley.​

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