The Searle Company Limited is one of the largest and fastest-growing pharmaceutical companies of Pakistan having eight state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities in Karachi, Lahore, and Belgium. The company was incorporated in Pakistan as a private limited company on October 5, 1965, as a subsidiary of G.D. Searle & Company U.S.A.

The spread of Corona Virus (COVID-19) pandemic has reached an unprecedented magnitude in modern history. The havoc wreaked by this contagion has left millions infected and thousands of deaths across the world, putting a strain on even the most well-developed public health care systems in the world.

As the virus made its way into Pakistan and began its gradual spread; panic, anxiety, and stress has set in with a massive pressure on the authorities to take diligent necessary steps to prevent the spread. With nearly half the population living below the poverty line and a haphazard Public Health System that is not nearly equipped to deal with a sudden health crisis.

Pakistan is struggling to flatten the curve with a grave lack of resources and limited hospitals, healthcare providers, medical machinery, essential services, and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). The epidemic has been quick to claim the lives of hundreds of healthcare professionals across the country and continues to pose a serious threat to the struggling healthcare system.

In the wake of this crisis, Searle was faced with the enormous unanticipated task of ensuring the safety and well-being of Healthcare Providers, Doctors, Nurses, Essential Workers, Community Members, the company employees, and patients at large.

Searle has always prioritized public welfare and corporate social responsibility, which led to the company deciding to help the nation combat the situation by initiating a rigorous and intense drive to produce and provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Testing Kits, Screening and Detection Tools for the Healthcare Providers, employees and Community Members with the aim to battle and prevent the virus more efficiently.

For Searle, the safety of Healthcare Providers, Doctors, Nurses and its employees is of paramount priority and has proactively taken some of the most stringent steps to decelerate the spread and save precious lives. Sensing the threat in the early stages, Searle has sent 100% of its Field Force and 50% of Operation Staff home without any layoffs or deductions and allowed them to work from home.

The company also realized the need for awareness resulting in the development of an intense prevention & awareness campaign for community and employees. This includes guidelines for the usage of thermal and RT-PCR screening equipment and provision of WHO-specified Personal Protective Gears, Latex and Nitrile gloves, Hand Sanitizers, Goggles, Face Shields and Disinfectants for the Healthcare Providers, particularly those managing patients in isolation wards and emergencies.

“Searle is at the forefront of helping and supporting our brave essential workers in these trying times as we vow to offer our assistance in providing all the needed resources to ensure their safety and protection in battling the COVID-19 pandemic"

Searle holds immense pride in taking the initiative and to this date, providing more than 100,000 PPE kits, including Hazmat Suits, Hand Sanitizers, Latex, and Nitrile Gloves, N95 Masks, and thousands of other Personal Protective Equipment. The Searle field force is also actively participating in steering the drive to disinfect Hospitals and Clinics and provide them with the necessary thermal screening and UV tools.

In doing all this, Searle wants to pay a cordial homage and tribute to all the Healthcare Providers particularly those who are in the frontline of the COVID-19 fire and stand with them in the face of adversary.

They have taken a resolute pledge to continue to shoulder the burden and play its part in awareness, prevention, detection, and management of the COVID-19 pandemic. Searle and the people of Pakistan stand with the compassionate medical fraternity and together we will sail through this tide and will come out triumphant, Insha Allah.

“Searle also salutes its workers and staff members working at our manufacturing facilities across Pakistan as well as the IBL distribution team for their untiring efforts to make sure the availability of essential medicines."

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020