The drugs have not yet been through FDA testing, but WHO says they can be used for "compassionate use" to help in the African outbreak. However, manufacturers may not have many supplies available.
Los Angeles Times: WHO OKs Use Of Experimental Drugs For Ebola Patients In West Africa
A World Health Organization panel advised Tuesday that it was ethical to use experimental, non-approved drugs to combat the Ebola virus in West Africa, and that five such treatments were being considered for "compassionate use" (Morin and Frayer, 8/12).
USA Today: U.N. Endorses Use Of Untested Ebola Medicines
The endorsement from the U.N.'s health care agency came after two American health care workers were treated with an experimental Ebola drug. Officials warned, however, that the improvement they showed may not have been directly related to the drugs. WHO says 1,013 people have died since March in the outbreak, the vast majority of them in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. Officials estimate that Ebola kills about half of those afflicted with the disease (Bacon and Weintraub, 8/12).
PBS NewsHour: WHO Approves Use Of Untested Drugs To Fight Ebola, But Supply May Be Running Out
An ethics panel of the World Health Organization unanimously approved using untested drugs to treat Ebola in West Africa, where more than 1,000 people have died from the outbreak so far. A shipment of the U.S.-made drug ZMapp is expected to arrive in Liberia this week, but the drugmaker may have otherwise exhausted its supply (Woodruff, 8/12).
This article was reprinted from kaiserhealthnews.org with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.