(Washington, D.C.) The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) announced that Paul A. Offit, MD, Chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases and the Director of the Vaccine Education Center at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, has been selected as the Honoree for the 2011 Biotech Humanitarian Award.
“BIO is honored to present Paul Offit with the 2011 Biotech Humanitarian Award. His personal endeavors in developing one of only two rotavirus vaccines available today, his dedication to bringing awareness to the benefits of vaccinating children and his work at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, can be credited with saving countless lives every day,” said Jim Greenwood, president and CEO of BIO. “Through his innovative science, exceptional work as an advocate and ability to communicate complicated concepts in a direct and easy-to-understand manner, Dr. Offit epitomizes what we look for in a biotech humanitarian.”
BIO established the Biotech Humanitarian Award in 2009 to recognize everyday heroes within the biotechnology community who have helped heal, fuel and feed the planet through their work.
Dr. Offit was selected as the 2011 Honoree in recognition of his 25 years spent dedicated to developing RotaTeq, one of the main vaccines currently used to fight rotavirus, a disease that is the leading cause of severe, dehydrating diarrhea in infants and young children. RotaTeq is recommended for universal use in infants by the Center for Disease Control and has the capacity to save as many as 2,000 lives per day.
He is also one of the most public faces of the scientific consensus that vaccines have no association with autism. Through his advocacy, Dr. Offit has successfully cut through misinformation and helped to educate parents on the health benefits of vaccinating their children.
Stephen A. Sherwin, M.D., Chairman of BIO’s Board of Directors Co-founder and Chairman of Ceregene, Inc. said, “Dr. Offit is truly a leader in his field and through his remarkable work as both a scientist and humanitarian, has made major contributions to improving the health of children around the world.”
During his tenure as a pediatrician specializing in infectious diseases, Dr. Offit has earned the reputation as an expert on vaccines, immunology, and virology. He has authored four acclaimed medical narratives, has spoken widely to both the media and the public and has written a numerous articles. Dr. Offit is the recipient of numerous awards in recognition of his work, including the President’s Certificate for Outstanding Service from the American Academy of Pediatrics which he received in 2009.
Dr. Offit was presented the Award during the June 29th Keynote Address at the 2011 BIO International Convention in Washington, DC. Dr. Offit will be donating the Award’s $10,000 prize to the Vaccine Education Center at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
Dr. Offit was selected as the honoree by a distinguished panel of judges comprising leaders in science, advocacy and media. The judges evaluated nominations based on four criteria: impact on future generations, impact on contemporary society, contribution to the field of biotechnology and level of innovation exhibited.
“I would like to thank our impressive panel of judges for their time spent reviewing nominations and selecting such an outstanding recipient for the 2011 Biotech Humanitarian Award,” added Greenwood.
To stay informed about the Biotech Humanitarian Award visit: http://biotech-now.org/biotechnology-humanitarian-award.
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