Maine Medicine Weekly Update - 02/19/2020  (Plain Text Version)

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In this issue:
IN THE SPOTLIGHT
•  No on 1: Time Is Short, We Need Your Help Now
•  The Maine Millennial: Donít Forget that Vaccines Save Lives
•  Maine CDC Infectious Disease Program Report
•  Maine's Weekly Influenza Report
•  Polio Eradication on UN Secretary Generalís Agenda During Pakistan Visit
•  Four Countries in the African Region License Vaccine in Milestone for Ebola Prevention
•  Physicians are Making Waves for the Purpose of Change
129th MAINE LEGISLATURE, SECOND REGULAR SESSION
•  Next MMA Legislative Call Will Be Tuesday, February 25th
•  State House Highlights of the Week
UPCOMING EVENTS
•  Upcoming Specialty Society Meetings
•  Maine Suicide Prevention Program Training for Clinicians
•  10th Annual Maine Patient Safety Academy - March 30, 2020
HEALTHCARE EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES
•  Medical Director, Primary Care Physician
•  Physician - Nasson Health Care
•  Nurse Practitioner - Nasson Health Care
•  Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner - Nasson Health Care
•  BC/BE Family Medicine or Internal Medicine Physician
•  Family Medicine Opportunity in Beautiful Western Maine
•  Orthopedic Surgeon Opportunity in Beautiful New England
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES
•  Opportunities at the VA for Volunteer Physicians
•  Volunteer Opportunity with Partners for World Health - Portland, ME

 

Four Countries in the African Region License Vaccine in Milestone for Ebola Prevention

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Burundi, Ghana and Zambia have licensed an Ebola vaccine, just 90 days after World Health Organization (WHO) prequalification. Registration of the vaccine is expected in additional countries in the coming weeks.

 

[From WHO 02/14/20]

Brazzaville/Geneva 14 February 2020 - The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Burundi, Ghana and Zambia have licensed an Ebola vaccine, just 90 days after World Health Organization (WHO) prequalification. Registration of the vaccine is expected in additional countries in the coming weeks.
 
The licensing of the vaccine means that the manufacturer can stockpile and widely distribute this vaccine to African countries at risk of Ebola virus disease outbreaks. Once licensed doses are available, use of the vaccine will not require clinical trial or other research protocols.
 
"The approval of the Ebola vaccine by these countries is another milestone in the fight against this unforgiving disease," said WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “Africa has rallied to cement hard-fought progress to keep its people safe from Ebola."
 
WHO accelerated the licensing and roll-out of the Ebola vaccine by certifying that it met the organization’s standards for quality, safety and efficacy in its fastest vaccine prequalification process ever, announced in November 2019.
 
The speed with which this has been achieved has been made possible by a different approach, where national licensing procedures were done in parallel based on one single scientific review process. Usually, these process are done one by one, which can take years. The process was led by WHO with the participation of the African Vaccine Regulatory Forum (an African network of national regulatory authorities and ethics committees), the European Medicines Agency, and Merck.
 
“The rapid approval of the Ebola vaccine by countries in the Africa Region helps ensure this critical prevention tool will be available when and where it is needed most,” said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa. “This kind of collaboration and innovation is a model for other health priorities.”
 
The injectable Ebola vaccine, Ervebo, is manufactured by Merck (known as MSD outside the US and Canada). Preliminary study results have shown a 97.5% vaccine efficacy. Data also suggests that vaccinating people who are already infected reduces their chances of dying.
 
In response to the ongoing Ebola outbreak in the DRC, over 290 000 people have been vaccinated under compassionate use protocols. Once licensed doses are available, use of the vaccine in DRC will no longer require these protocols.


https://www.who.int/news-room/detail/14-02-2020-four-countries-in-the-african-region-license-vaccine-in-milestone-for-ebola-prevention