News

Obama administration setting up group on experimental Ebola drugs

Obama administration setting up group on experimental Ebola drugs

OUTBREAK: In this photo provided by the Spanish Defense Ministry, aid workers and doctors transfer Miguel Pajares, a Spanish priest who was infected with the Ebola virus while working in Liberia, from a plane to an ambulance as he leaves the Torrejon de Ardoz military airbase, near Madrid, Spain, Thursday, Aug. 7. Pajares was in stable condition at a Madrid hospital on Thursday after being evacuated from Liberia, health officials said. Photo: Associated Press

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration is forming a special Ebola working group to consider setting policy for the potential use of experimental drugs to help the hundreds infected by the deadly disease in Africa, an official said on Thursday.

The group will include scientists and other officials from such government health agencies as the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

Fauci said in an interview he was unsure when the group would first meet or who would be represented, but added: “I’m sure they’ll tap people from NIAID with competence in clinical trials.”

The group was being formed under Dr. Nicole Lurie, the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response at the Department of Health and Human Services, an administration official said.

Expertise in clinical trials, in which patients receive an experimental drug under scientifically rigorous conditions, is crucial, Fauci said.

“You need to balance compassion with the need to figure out if something actually works,” he said, referring to the experimental Ebola drug ZMapp, from Mapp Biopharmaceutical, which was given to two American aid workers before they were airlifted from Liberia to Emory University Hospital.

(Reporting by David Morgan and Sharon Begley; editing by Michele Gershberg and G Crosse)

Recent Headlines

4 hours ago in Viral Videos

WATCH: Puppies predict Super Bowl 50

15-overlay-5

Right or wrong, one thing is for sure: these puppies are adorable!

4 hours ago in Music

Blake Shelton is tired of reading the tabloids

blakeshelton

"The Voice" star says he is tired of reading "bullcrap" about his personal life.

5 hours ago in Entertainment

McDonald’s serving up ‘smarter’ Happy Meals

18-overlay-2

Ronald McDonald plans to serve up a side of literacy as the fast food giant swaps toys for millions of books.

5 hours ago in Entertainment

OPENING WEEKEND: ‘Hail, Caesar!’ and ‘Pride and Prejudice and Zombies’

12-overlay-2

Here's a look at some of the films set to open this weekend.

9 hours ago in Viral Videos

Watch what this guy does with his iPhone

22-overlay-2

This experiment will make you want to hit the slopes and take your cell phone along for the ride.