JACKSON, Wis. – Wisconsin Pharmacal – the official licensee of Coleman® Insect Repellents as well as other outdoor health and safety products – has partnered with AmeriCares to help prevent the spread of Zika virus throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. The company is making a monetary donation to help support the areas hardest hit by the virus, which includes the Americas and the Caribbean. The donation from Wisconsin Pharmacal is also being generously matched by their long time supply partner, EMD Performance Materials Corp. (EMD). EMD provides the active substance IR3535® (a registered trademark of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany named Ethyl Butylacetylaminopropionate) for their Coleman SkinSmart DEET-Free Insect Repellent formula.
AmeriCares is a non-profit emergency response and global health organization that is on the frontlines of the Zika crisis caring for patients with suspected infections and providing education on how to best prevent the disease. AmeriCares is partnering with hospitals and clinics throughout Latin America and the Caribbean to ensure they are equipped with the tools needed – education, repellents, etc. – to address the intensifying health crisis.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Zika virus is primarily spread to people through the bite of an infected mosquito. The most common symptoms are fever, rash, joint pain and conjunctivitis (red eyes). The illness is usually asymptomatic or mild with symptoms lasting for several days to a week after being bitten by an infected mosquito. However, the Zika virus is of concern because it can cause serious brain defects, such as microcephaly, when spread from a pregnant woman to the fetus. Furthermore, two serious autoimmune neurologic conditions, Guillain-Barré Syndrome and acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM) have been linked to the Zika virus epidemic.
“The most effective way to prevent Zika virus infections is to avoid bites from infected mosquitoes,” said Mary Wundrock, senior director of quality & technology for Wisconsin Pharmacal Company. “Insect repellents are a highly effective tool to prevent the spread of the virus, but are not widely available in the areas hardest hit. We’re working with AmeriCares to support their prevention and education efforts.”
“Zika has been deemed a public health emergency by the WHO. The virus is spreading rapidly and millions of people will likely be at risk this year. Though most people will have very mild illnesses, we must protect those at risk for potentially serious consequences, especially pregnant women,” said Dr. E. Anne Peterson, senior vice president of Global Programs for AmeriCares. “It’s going to take the combined efforts of many dedicated partners to reach those vulnerable populations. We’re thankful companies like Wisconsin Pharmacal are joining the fight.”
About Wisconsin Pharmacal Company, LLC:
Wisconsin Pharmacal Company is a Coleman® licensee and the exclusive manufacturer and distributor of Coleman® Repellents. The company’s complete portfolio of outdoor brands includes: Coleman® First Aid, Potable Aqua® water purification products, StingEze® insect bite relief products, AtwaterCarey® Outdoor Essentials, and BAITMATE™ fish attractants. For more details, please visit www.pharmacalway.com.
AmeriCares is an emergency response and global health organization committed to saving lives and building healthier futures for people in crisis in the United States and around the world. Every day, AmeriCares puts critically needed medicines and supplies in the hands of frontline health workers and develops innovative, sustainable health improvements in their communities. For more information, visit americares.org
About EMD Performance Materials Corp.
EMD Performance Materials is the North America high-tech materials business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, comprising a portfolio of applications in fields such as consumer electronics, semiconductors, lighting, coatings, printing technology, plastics, and cosmetics.
Key products include display materials, LED materials for lighting as well as OLED materials for lighting and displays, functional materials for solar panels and energy solutions, effect pigments as well as active ingredients and fillers for cosmetics, food and pharmaceutical products, effect pigments and functional materials for coatings, printing and plastics and high-purity specialty chemical materials for the electronics and semiconductor industry. Today, the business has about 500 employees around the country with main operations in Philadelphia (PA). For more information, please visit www.emd-pm.com.