October 25, 2012 / 6:06 AM / in 5 years

Novartis does not expect further sales bans of flu vaccines

ZURICH, Oct 25 (Reuters) - The Chief Executive of Swiss drugmaker Novartis is confident its flu vaccines manufactured in Italy are safe and does not expect further countries to ban sales or halt deliveries.

In a conference call to journalists, Chief Executive Joseph Jimenez said Novartis shipped the two vaccines produced in Italy to European markets and parts of Asia.

He said he did not expect other countries to take action to suspend deliveries but he could not rule this out.

Novartis reported worse-than-expected third quarter sales on Thursday, dragged down by the loss of a U.S. patent on its top-selling blood pressure drug Diovan and tough comparisons at its Sandoz unit.

Reporting by Caroline Copley

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