Pfizer and BioNTech awarded the 2023 Prix Galien Canada Innovative Product Award

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Press Release

Ottawa, November 15, 2023 – Prix Galien Canada is pleased to announce that Pfizer and BioNTech are the recipients of the distinguished Innovative Product Award for their COVID-19 vaccine, Comirnaty. This award is presented annually to a breakthrough drug that has made the most significant overall contribution to patient care in Canada in terms of efficacy, safety, benefits, and innovation.

The COVID-19 global pandemic caused severe social and economic disruptions, which meant urgent action was needed to contain its impact. Early in 2020, BioNTech and Pfizer joined forces and, through their collaboration, developed the mRNA vaccine in record time, saving countless lives and easing demands on stressed healthcare systems and workers.

“Pfizer and BioNTech came together to accomplish one of the most ambitious vaccine development programs in history, shattering the previous record set in the 1960s for the development of a mumps vaccine, which took four years. The benefits of this breakthrough vaccine cannot be overstated, and we are extremely proud to recognize a product that has had a such a significant impact on Canadians’ lives,” said Dr. Jean Gray, Chair of the Prix Galien Canada Jury.

To date, more than 66 million doses of Health Canada-approved Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines have been administered to Canadians since it received regulatory approval in 2020. A recent analysis shows vaccines were highly effective at reducing COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths – estimates suggest 21 percent fewer cases, 37 percent fewer hospitalizations and 34,900 fewer deaths from January 2021 to May 2022.

“It is with great pleasure and profound gratitude that I stand here today to accept the prestigious Prix Galien Innovative Product Award on behalf of Pfizer and BioNTech for Comirnaty, Canada’s first approved COVID-19 vaccine,” said Najah Sampson, President of Pfizer Canada, during the Health Research Foundation Awards Reception in Montreal. “The development of Comirnaty is a shining example of what is possible when scientific brilliance, dedication, and a shared sense of urgency converge.”

For more information on the Innovative Product Award, visit:

About the Prix Galien Canada Innovative Product Award

The Prix Galien Canada – Innovative Product Award is presented every year to the company that has developed a drug product launched on the Canadian market and judged by the Jury to have made the most significant overall contribution to patient care in Canada in terms of efficacy, safety, benefits and innovation.

About the Health Research Foundation

The Health Research Foundation (HRF) of Innovative Medicines Canada is a non-profit organization that invests in Canadian academic health research and promotes the value of research-driven health innovation in Canada. The HRF is one of the leading private health foundations in the country and its contributions help prevent illness, treat disease, and improve Canada’s health-care systems. The organization is committed to addressing health challenges through research excellence, stakeholder partnerships and the advancement of public policy.

For further information:

Marise Varanda
Director, Media Relations & Content
Telephone: 613-462-5369


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