Via The Globe and Mail, a report by The Associated Press: Liberian Ebola survivor calls for more experimental drug to Africa; blockade lifted. Excerpt:
A Liberian health worker who recovered from Ebola after receiving an experimental drug urged the manufacturer to speed up its production and send it to Africa, while crowds celebrated in the streets Saturday after authorities reopened a slum that had been barricaded for more than a week to try to contain the disease.
Physician’s assistant Kyndy Kobbah was expected to be released from hospital Saturday after she survived Ebola, which has been fatal in more than half the cases sweeping West Africa. Kobbah contracted the disease while working at a government-run hospital north of the capital.
In an interview with The Associated Press before her release, Kobbah urged the manufacturer of the experimental drug known as ZMapp to step up production. The company has said that all its supplies are exhausted and it will take months to make more.
“They need to make more Zmapp and send to us,” she said.
Doctors have said there is no way to know whether ZMapp made a difference or if survivors like Kobbah recovered on their own, as about 45 per cent of people infected in this outbreak have. The drug had never been tested in humans before it was given to two Americans who were infected with Ebola in Liberia. They survived Ebola and were released from an Atlanta hospital.
However, a study released online Friday by the journal Nature found that ZMapp healed all 18 monkeys infected with the deadly virus.
Meanwhile, tensions diminished Saturday in the West Point neighbourhood of Liberia’s capital after authorities lifted a blockade that had sparked unrest. Residents living in the area had feared running out of food and safe water on the peninsula.