BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company) (NYSE: BDX), a leading global medical technology company, announced Oct. 7 that it has strengthened the U.S. government’s access to safety injection devices through increased manufacturing capacity and domestic supply. The new syringe and needle manufacturing lines, which were completed on an accelerated timeline, represent the public-private partnership between BD and Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR).
In July 2020, ASPR’s Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) invested approximately $42 million into a $70 million capital project to further expand BD’s operations and manufacturing lines in Holdrege, Nebraska. The expansion builds on the company’s deep commitment and legacy in supporting U.S. vaccination efforts through the domestic manufacturing of needles and syringes.
“As the fight against COVID-19 continues, we are steadfast in our commitment to securing the nation’s supply continuity of these critical injection devices,” said Rick Byrd, president of Medication Delivery Solutions for BD. “Our teams are working tirelessly – as they have been since the beginning of the pandemic – to ensure that all of our customers, including the U.S. government, have the supplies they need to vaccinate against this virus while simultaneously managing routine, preventative health care needs, such as the seasonal flu.”
The new lines increase capacity of BD’s existing needle and syringe supply capabilities domestically. To date, the company has provided several hundred million injection devices to the federal campaign. This marks a timely manufacturing milestone as the United States heads into flu vaccination season and the critical need for these essential devices continues.
“Domestic manufacturing has proven critical to responding rapidly and effectively to this pandemic,” said Dawn O’Connell, HHS Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response. “With millions of lives at stake, we do not have time to wait for supplies to be shipped from other countries. Taking action now to increase U.S.-based manufacturing capacity will allow us to meet the needs of patients and health care providers while also creating valuable U.S. jobs.”
Increasing supply capacity from the company’s Holdrege facility builds on a 70-year manufacturing legacy in the state. BD operates three other world-class manufacturing facilities in Nebraska: Broken Bow and two facilities in Columbus. The company first established its manufacturing presence in Nebraska following World War II to support the U.S. government’s call for the geographic diversification of manufacturing operations away from the East Coast. Since then, BD’s 3,500 Nebraska-based employees have been motivated by the promise and power of ensuring providers on the front lines of health care have access to needed injection devices. That motivation inspired the development of these new manufacturing lines, as demonstrated in this brief video.
In addition to ramping up the manufacturing of needles and syringes domestically to meet U.S. needs for the COVID-19 pandemic, BD is working to help ensure the global community is prepared for future pandemic vaccination. BD previously announced plans to invest $1.2 billion over four years to enhance its manufacturing capacity and technology for pre-fillable syringes and advanced drug delivery systems – allowing for continued growth of new injectable drugs and vaccines.
“Among other important lessons learned, COVID-19 is highlighting the critical value of ongoing partnerships, collaboration and planning to meet our nation’s current and future pandemic needs,” said Nicolette Louissaint, PhD, executive director of Healthcare Ready. “We’re proud to partner with BD as they swiftly stepped up and stepped in to help the U.S. increase its capacity to produce syringes and needles that are essential for accelerating vaccination efforts to protect the public here and across the world.”
BD is the largest manufacturer of injection devices in the world, producing multiple billions of syringes and needles annually through its global manufacturing network. To learn more about BD’s vaccination preparedness efforts, visit bd.com/vaccination.