Ebola scare: WHO may consider secret serum ZMapp

The World Health Organistion (WHO) may consider using medicines or treatments that are currently not approved for use but may prove beneficial to patients of Ebola.

This was revealed by Ghana Country Representative of WHO, Magda Robalo, who will be part of a key meeting Thursday August, 7, 2014 in Ghana “to consult with experts on whether or not the Ebola virus in West Africa is to be considered a public health emergency of international concern.”

American doctors, Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol, were saved by experimental drug ZMapp after they came down with the deadly Ebola virus in Liberia. Until then the treatment had never been tried before on humans.

This has sparked calls for WHO to fast track decisions to apply treatments like ZMapp, which was developed by Mapp Biopharmaceutical Inc., even though it has not undergone the necessary tests to secure the global health institution’s approval.

Magda Robalo said on Newsnight, Wedneday, that “next week, WHO is convening exactly to look into whether or not, given the maximum reach of the outbreak that we are dealing with we should consider using treatments that are currently not approved for use but could be beneficial to patients, given the fact that this is a deadly disease that is killing people”.

Liberia, Sierra Leone and recently Nigeria, have all declared a state of emergency after the deadly disease were recorded in their country.

The spread of Ebola is spreading quickly within Africa and as far as the Middle East.

So far the disease, which kills 90% of patients within 21 days has claimed more than 900 lives worldwide since renewed outbreak about two months ago.

Magda Robalo indicated that although there are numerous treatments and possible vaccines that are being tested, ZMapp serum seems the most advanced.

“The meeting which WHO will be holding next week is also to look at the ethics related to whether or not we can recommend the use of experimental treatment for large scale treatment of people”, said WHO’s Ghana Representative.

Currently, global health experts at the World Health Organization are meeting to discuss new measures to tackle the Ebola outbreak.

The meeting is expected to last two days and will decide whether to declare a global health emergency.

Click on attached to listen Magda Rubalo on Newsnight on Joy 99.7 FM, Wedenesday: Story by Ghana | Myjoyonline.com | George Nyavor | [email protected]

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