Interests Of Pregnant, Lactating Women Must Be Considered In Lassa Fever Vaccine Development

STAT: As the world prepares to fight Lassa fever, the interests of pregnant women must be part of the planning
Ruth A. Karron, director of the Center for Immunization Research and director of the Johns Hopkins Vaccine Initiative; Carleigh Krubiner, policy fellow at the Center for Global Development; and Ruth R. Faden, founder of the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics

“…As plans are being made now to advance the important work necessary to combat Lassa fever, it is essential that the interests of women who are pregnant or lactating and their infants are addressed from the very outset. [The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness and Innovation (CEPI)] has paved the way, not only by prioritizing Lassa fever vaccine development but by underscoring the importance of conducting research specific to pregnancy and considering how best to move [the Pregnancy Research Ethics for Vaccines, Epidemics, and New Technologies (PREVENT)] recommendations forward. Developing a Lassa fever vaccine that can be offered to pregnant women will be an important double win for global health. It will not only help ensure that pregnant women and their infants are protected against a deadly disease, but will also provide a model for future development of vaccines for use in epidemics” (1/15).