Company Engagement Case Study

CSL

Issue: Encouraging high ethical standards in blood plasma collection

CSL is a large Australian-listed healthcare company. A significant part of their business is based on the provision of human blood plasma-derived products. The company operates 90 centres across the US for the collection of blood plasma from which the company then produces a variety of blood plasma products. In the US, blood is not donated but paid for creating a number of ethical issues for companies involved in this activity.

Objective

To understand the processes involved in managing blood plasma collection centres and to encourage high ethical standards in their application.

Scope and process

CSL’s US blood plasma franchise has grown rapidly in recent years and we were motivated to engage with the company to understand potential risks associated with this expansion, including potential ethical issues associated with the collection of blood. We corresponded with the company’s IR Director and had a teleconference with him.

Outcome: Partially successful

It is clear that CSL recognise the ethical issues associated with donating blood. Most donors are students or forces personnel in the US who have time and the inclination to participate. Each donor receives $40 per donation. CSL see it as in their interests to look after their donor population who, in addition to receiving notification if the screening process indicates that they have health issues, are not allowed to give blood more frequently than every two days. We believe that it is critical to the long-term health of CSL’s franchise to ensure that donations are managed safely and in the best interests of the donor. We will continue to engage with CSL on these issues.