Development, Approval Of Ervebo Ebola Vaccine Offers Several Lessons, Experts Write In Opinion Piece

STAT: The public science behind the ‘Merck’ Ebola vaccine
Matthew Herder, director of the Health Law Institute at Dalhousie University; Janice E. Graham, university research professor of medicine at Dalhousie University; and Richard Gold, professor of medicine and law at McGill University

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently approved an important vaccine against Ebola … Alex Azar, who heads the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, quickly congratulated his department’s funding and ‘American global health leadership’ for the vaccine, which is called Ervebo. As recently detailed in STAT, the reality is quite different: Canadian public institutions and funding outside the United States were primarily responsible for the vaccine. … The story of Ervebo offers several lessons. It illustrates that health research is international and that the United States does not always lead. It shows how even precarious public-sector science can do so much more than pure discovery research. It reveals how tired our approach to medical innovation has become. And it underscores growing concerns that important interventions like lifesaving vaccines may be neglected, delayed in development, or priced beyond reach unless and until we entertain alternative ways of bringing innovations to market” (1/16).

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