World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Ebola: UN convenes ethical review of experimental drugs

Ebola: UN health agency convenes ethical review of experimental drugs

A government health worker at the Kenema Ebola Treatment Centre in Sierra Leone attends to a victim. Photo: IRIN/Tommy Trenchard

11 August 2014

The United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) today convened a meeting of ethicists and scientists to discuss on the use of experimental medicines in treating Ebola, three days after the agency declared the current outbreak of the disease in West Africa an international public health emergency.

WHO Spokesperson Gregory Hartl said via Twitter that the Geneva-based organization is planning a press conference at 2 p.m. Tuesday.

“The recent treatment of two health workers infected with the Ebola virus with experimental medicine has raised questions about whether medicine that has never been tested and shown to be safe in people should be used in the outbreak, and, given the extremely limited amount of medicine available, if it is used, who should receive it,” according to WHO.

The virtual meeting today will “develop a framework for how we should approach” the issue of untested drugs “because this is not a single drug issue; it is really a framework, which is potentially applicable to options as they come up… and then we hope that will provide solid directions for how to move on this group of issues,” Dr. Keiji Fukuda, WHO Assistant Director-General for Health Security, had told reporters last Friday.

At that time, WHO Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan declared the current outbreak of the Ebola a public health emergency of international concern, endorsing the unanimous recommendation made by Emergency Committee of International Experts on the current Ebola outbreak in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, and which has now spread to Nigeria.

“This is the largest, most severe, most complex outbreak in the nearly four decades history of this disease,” said Dr. Chan who also endorsed the temporary measures to reduce the spread of Ebola agreed upon by the Executive Committee and issues as a statement.

Regarding the issue of temporary travel bans, the Committee declared: “There should be no general ban on international travel or trade” but recommended restrictions regarding the Ebola-affected travellers.

As of 4 August 2014, the cumulative number of cases attributed to Ebola in the four countries stands at 1, 711, including 932 deaths.

WHO said the disease if affecting only a small part of the African continent, but the head of the UN health agency said there is “a clear call for international solidarity” to boost the capacity if the countries currently affected.

“Our collective health security depends on support for containment in support in these countries,” Dr. Chan said on Friday.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

UN Health Agency Responds To Ebola Spike

UN health agency responds to Ebola spike by deploying team on border of Guinea and Guinea-Bissau More>>

UN Casts Israel As World's Worst Violator Of Health Rights

Israel's army team of medics recently treated 1,600 victims of the Nepal earthquake. More>>

W Thousands Flee Syria’s Besieged Historic City Of Palmyra

As thousands flee Syria’s besieged historic city of Palmyra, UN refugee agency readies response plan More>>

UN Agency To Halt Housing Allowance For Palestine Refugees

Lack of funds forces UNRWA to suspend cash assistance for housing for Palestinian refugees from Syria in Lebanon. Photo: UNRWA/Shafiq Fahed More>>


Bangkok: International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, Biphophia

BMA, UN, embassy representatives, civil society and artists stand united with LGBTI Thais on International Day against Transphobia, Homophobia, and Biphobia (IDAHOT) at Bangkok Art and Culture Centre More>>

Displaced Iraqis Face Difficulties As Fighting Continues

UNHCR is concerned about the processing arrangements in place at the Bzabz bridge – a series of pontoons across the Euphrates River which marks the boundary between Anbar province and the capital, Baghdad. Photo: UNHCR/G. Ohara More>>

UNESCO Chief Condemns Killing Of Bangladeshi Blogger

Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Irina Bokova. UN Photo/Devra Berkowitz The head of the United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom worldwide today voiced ... More>>

Philadelphia: Train Crash

Five people have been confirmed dead and more than 136 people injured after an Amtrak train crashed in Philadelphia today at 9.20pm local time.More>>

UN News: Alarming Surge In Bay Of Bengal Crossings

The number of irregular migrants crossing the Bay of Bengal has almost doubled over the past year amid a dangerous uptick in human smuggling and trafficking across the region, according to a new report from the United Nations refugee agency. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news