FoundedMay 3, 2004 (spun off from Abbott Laboratories)
HeadquartersLake Forest, Illinois, United States
Key people
F. Michael (Mike) Ball (CEO); John C. Staley, Chairman of the Board of Directors
ProductsGeneric acute-care and oncology injectables, integrated infusion therapy, medication management systems
Revenue$4.5 billion (2014)
Number of employees
Approximately 19,000

Hospira was an American global pharmaceutical and medical device company with headquarters in Lake Forest, Illinois. It had approximately 19,000 employees.[1] Before its acquisition by Pfizer, Hospira was the world's largest producer of generic injectable pharmaceuticals,[2] manufacturing generic acute-care and oncology injectables, as well as integrated infusion therapy and medication management systems. Hospira's products are used by hospitals and alternate site providers, such as clinics, home healthcare providers and long-term care facilities.[3] It was formerly the hospital products division of Abbott Laboratories. On September 3, 2015, Hospira was acquired by Pfizer, who subsequently sold off the medical devices portion of Hospira to ICU Medical.

Worldwide sales in 2014 were approximately $4.5 billion.[4] Current results are now part of Pfizer's consolidated statements.


Hospira corporate headquarters in Lake Forest, Illinois

In January 2004, Abbott announced it was spinning off its hospital products division.[5]

Hospira's name was picked by employee vote. The name is derived from the words hospital, spirit, inspire and the Latin word "spero," which means "hope."[3] Hospira became an independent company on May 3, 2004, with 14,000 employees, 14 manufacturing sites and an estimated $2.5 billion in annual sales.[6]

In 2007, Hospira purchased Mayne Pharma Ltd., an Australian-based specialty injectable pharmaceuticals company, for $2.1 billion.[7]

In 2009, Hospira acquired the biotechnology business from Pliva-Croatia, the generic injectable pharmaceuticals business of Orchid Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals Ltd., a leading Indian pharmaceuticals company, for approximately $400 million,[8] and TheraDoc, a clinical informatics company that develops hospital surveillance systems, in 2009.[9] In 2010, Hospira acquired Javelin Pharmaceuticals, Inc., maker of post-operative pain management drug Dyloject, for approximately $145 million.[10]

In 2011, Hospira's board chose Mike Ball, formerly president of Allergan, as Hospira's new CEO. Ball became CEO in March 2011.[11] Hospira named John Staley its non-executive chairman with the retirement of former executive chairman Christopher Begley in January 2012. Begley had announced his retirement as Hospira's chief executive in August 2010, but had remained as executive chairman.[12]

In 2015, Pfizer signed an agreement to acquire Hospira.[13] The roughly $17 billion acquisition was completed in September, 2015.[14] A year later Pfizer sold the medical devices portion of Hospira to ICU Medical for roughly $900 million in cash, stock, and other consideration.[15][16][17]

Sodium thiopental production

Sodium thiopental is an anesthetic discovered by Abbott Laboratories in the 1930s.[18] Hospira manufactured the drug after splitting off from Abbott under the brand name Pentothal. The WHO considers it an essential drug. However, it is also used as part of the lethal injection protocol in many US states.[19] Though Hospira has supplied these states with the drug, it has said, "we do not support the use of any of our products in capital punishment procedures."[20]

In January 2011, the company announced that it would stop producing sodium thiopental.[21] Hospira had recently moved production of the drug from a plant in North Carolina to a plant in Liscate, Italy.[21] However, the Italian government would only allow Hospira to manufacture it if they could guarantee it wouldn't be used in capital punishment.[22] The Italian constitution bans the use of capital punishment.[23] Company officials determined there was no way it could prevent sodium thiopental from being used in executions, and did not want to expose their employees to liability.[24][23][25]

Legislation and litigation

Oxaliplatin: In August 2009, Hospira introduced a generic version of Sanofi-Aventis SA's (SNY) colon-cancer drug known generically as oxaliplatin and by the brand name Eloxatin, in the United States. In April 2010, Hospira announced a legal settlement with Sanofi-Aventis. Under the settlement terms, Hospira agreed to stop selling oxaliplatin injection in the United States by June 30, 2010, and can relaunch the product in the United States on Aug. 9, 2012.[26]

Biosimilars: In 2010, the U.S. Congress passed legislation that would allow the marketing of biosimilar drugs in the United States. The legislation would allow 12 years of data exclusivity for brand-name biologics. Some consumer groups, like AARP, oppose this provision, saying it would cause lack of access to the promise of such drugs.[27]


Hospira's competitors in specialty injectable pharmaceuticals include Fresenius AG, Baxter International Inc., Bedford Laboratories, Mylan, Sandoz, Teva Pharmaceuticals as well as divisions of several multinational pharmaceutical companies. Its competitors in medication management systems include Baxter, B. Braun Melsungen AG, CareFusion and Fresenius Medical Care AG.[28]

Infusion pump system firmware vulnerability disclosures

In 2014-2015 two security researchers independently identified what were described as severe defects in Hospira's PCA system firmware, the software controlling various of their drug infusion equipment (CVE-2015-3459[29] and further advisory ICSA-15-125-01B[30]). Numerous remote exploit vulnerabilities were found, in what was believed to be the first FDA safety advisory of its kind.[31] This was followed in July 2015 by a second FDA recommendation that hospitals discontinue use of the affected pumps entirely.[32] The devices, extent of their flaws, and implications, were widely discussed.[33][34][35]


  1. ^ "Hospira - Investor Relations - Shareholder FAQ".
  2. ^ "US-based Hospira to buy Orchid Chemicals' injectables biz for $400 mn". The Economic Times. 16 December 2009.
  3. ^ a b "About Hospira".
  4. ^ "HSP Key Statistics". Yahoo.com.
  5. ^ Higginbotham, Stacey (25 January 2004). "Abbott Labs to spin off unit". Austin Business Journal.
  6. ^ "Hospira Begins Trading As Part of the S&P 500". Wall Street Journal. 2004-05-04. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2020-04-23.
  7. ^ "Hospira close to purchase of Mayne". Chicago Tribune. 19 January 2007. Retrieved 2020-04-23.
  8. ^ "US-based Hospira to Buy Orchid Chemical's Injectables Biz For $400 Mn". The Economic Times. 16 December 2009.
  9. ^ "Hospira Acquires Theradoc, Enhances Medication Safety and Infection Management Offerings". Infection Control Today. 2 December 2009.
  10. ^ "Hospira To Close $145M Javelin Deal This Week". BusinessWeek. 29 June 2010. Archived from the original on 26 October 2012.
  11. ^ "Hospira Names Allergan's Michael Ball as CEO". Daily Herald. 8 March 2011.
  12. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-07-07. Retrieved 2012-04-11.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  13. ^ "Pfizer to buy Hospira to boost biosimilar pipeline". 5 February 2015.
  14. ^ "Pfizer completes $17-billion Hospira acquisition". The Pharma Letter. 4 September 2015. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  15. ^ Pringle, Sarah (6 January 2017). "ICU Medical Wins Big Price Cut to Buy Pfizer's Hospira Unit". TheStreet.com. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  16. ^ Jamerson, Joshua (6 October 2016). "ICU Medical To Buy Pfizer Unit in $1 Billion Deal". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  17. ^ "ICU Medical Completes the Acquisition of Hospira Infusion Systems from Pfizer". ICU Medical. ICU Medical. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  18. ^ Thatcher, Virginia S. (1953). "Chapter 7: Illegal or Legal?". History of Anesthesia with Emphasis on the Nurse Specialist. J.B. Lippincott. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-05-01.
  19. ^ Allen, Nick (27 September 2010). "US executions on hold due to lethal injection drug shortage". London: The Telegraph.
  20. ^ Welsh-Huggins, Andrew (27 September 2010). "Shortage of drug holds up some U.S. executions". NBC News. AP.
  21. ^ a b McGreal, Chris (2011-01-23). "Lethal injection drug production ends in the US". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2020-04-23.
  22. ^ "EU puts squeeze on drug supplies for U.S. executions". Reuters. 2011-12-20. Retrieved 2020-04-23.
  23. ^ a b Koppel, Nathan (January 22, 2011). "Drug Halt Hinders Executions in the U.S." The Wall Street Journal.
  24. ^ Eckholm, Erik; Zezima, Katie (21 January 2011). "States Face Shortage of Key Lethal Injection Drug". New York Times.
  25. ^ "Hospira - Investor Relations - Press Release". corporate-ir.net.
  26. ^ "Sanofi-Aventis Settles Additional Eloxatin Suits". MarketWatch. 6 April 2010.
  27. ^ "Home - AARP Online Community". aarp.org.
  28. ^ "Hsp". CNN.
  29. ^ "NVD - Detail". nist.gov.
  30. ^ "Hospira LifeCare PCA Infusion System Vulnerabilities (Update B) - ICS-CERT". us-cert.gov.
  31. ^ "Billy (BK) Rios". xs-sniper.com.
  32. ^ "Symbiq Infusion System by Hospira: FDA Safety Communication - Cybersecurity Vulnerabilities". fda.gov.
  33. ^ "Researcher: Drug Pump the 'Least Secure IP Device I've Ever Seen' - The Security Ledger". The Security Ledger. 5 May 2015.
  34. ^ "Serious Security Flaws Found in Hospira LifeCare Drug Pumps - SecurityWeek.Com". securityweek.com.
  35. ^ Andrea Peterson (3 August 2015). "Connected medical devices: The Internet of things-that-could-kill-you". Washington Post.

External links

  • Official website