Anna Pokojska’s life was transformed when she received a kidney transplant in 2017. The Polish native, who now lives in Killarney, has since gone on to win medals in the World Transplant games.
ut all of this would not have been possible without the support of a Kerry company: Astellas, based in Killorglin, which is are responsible for the anti-rejection treatment used by organ-transplant patients all over the world.
In a strange coincidence for Anna, the anti-rejection drug used by transplant patients is in fact made right in her adopted home county.
The Astellas plant is among the companies that feature in ‘Innovate For Life’ – a new series of films about the impact of medicines’ innovation on patients lives and in communities.
The films are part of a campaign led by the industry group, the Irish Pharmaceutical Healthcare Association, that gives a platform to patients, scientists, doctors and manufacturing leaders to explain the impact of their work on society and the economy. The work that Astellas undertakes right here in Kerry is part of the film series, and Anna features to tell her story and the impact that Astellas has had on her life with the production of the anti-rejection drug. Also featured on the film is the Executive Director of Kerry Operations at Astellas Louis Collins and Site Energy Lead Megan Staunton. Local guest-house owner, Fergus Foley, is also interviewed.
Mr Louis explains that Astellas plays an important role in patients’ lives.
“For over 28 years, Astellas has been a significant part of the economy and community in Kerry. More than that, though, we have helped to power Ireland’s export-led growth, keeping medicines manufacturing going during the pandemic. The work we do in Killorglin is vital for transplant patients all over the world. We are proud of our impact locally, nationally, and globally. As part of ‘Innovate For Life’, we are telling that story,” he said. The new films are rolling out across IPHA’s Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn channels. They can be viewed on YouTube and on ipha.ie.