Supporting our nearest neighbours through antivenom partnership

  • Joint media release with:

The Hon Pat Conroy MP, Minister for International Development and the Pacific

Australia is extending a life-saving partnership that supports Papua New Guinea's health system, by providing antivenom doses and training for PNG healthcare workers.

The PNG Snakebite Partnership has been extended for a further three years until 2027 and will continue the strong ties built between the Australian Government, Papua New Guinea's National Department of Health, Australian company CSL Seqirus and now St John Ambulance PNG, a new partner on the project.

As part of the agreement, CSL Seqirus will provide an annual donation of up to 600 vials of Australian-made antivenom to PNG. St John Ambulance will distribute antivenoms to more than 65 healthcare clinics, train healthcare workers in snakebite patient management and collect epidemiological data to improve snakebite care in PNG.

Since 2018, the partnership has helped save over 2,000 lives, provided almost 3,000 doses of antivenoms for venomous snakes and marine creatures, and delivered training to 1,500 healthcare workers.

The funding complements the Australian Government's broad and long-standing support for the health sector in PNG.

The Australian Government has a strategic partnership with CSL Seqirus for the production and supply of antivenoms, pandemic influenza vaccines, seasonal flu vaccines and Q fever vaccines.

Quote attributable to Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator the Hon Penny Wong:

"Many Australians know all too well the impact of bites and stings from venomous creatures and this is a significant health challenge for our Pacific neighbours as well.

"Australia is proud to support communities in our region, including through sharing our life-saving medicines, knowledge and experience, allowing them to be treated sooner and closer to home."

Quote attributable to Minister for International Development and the Pacific, the Hon Pat Conroy MP:

"With one of the highest incidences of snakebite in the world this partnership provides critical support to improving patient outcomes in PNG.

"The Albanese Government is proud to partner with a leading Australian organisation like CSL as well as St John Ambulance PNG to improve access to life-saving treatments in PNG."

Media note: Images PNG Snakebite Partnership

Media enquiries

  • Minister's office: (02) 6277 7500
  • DFAT Media Liaison: (02) 6261 1555