Trials for Ebola treatments to start at MSF sites

Scottish MEP has praised the medical humanitarian organisation Médecins Sans Frontière (MSF) for their commitment to host first clinical trials in three Ebola treatment centres in West Africa.  

The initiative, which is due to start in December, is a result of an international cooperation. The aim is to quickly find an effective therapy that can be used against the disease, which has so far taken around 5,000 lives in the current outbreak in the region. 

Scotland’s only member of the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs committee, Alyn Smith said: 

“I met with Médecins Sans Frontières last month to discuss the Ebola crisis and presented a written statement during the Commission’s Response to Ebola crisis debate to praise the selfless work of MSF volunteers, including the 16 staff reported as infected with the virus. 

 “In the absence of specific treatments for Ebola, it’s very encouraging to see a collaborated effort of some of the best European institutions, united, to find cure for this deadly disease.   

“I was especially pleased that the European Commission allocated €24.4 million from the EU budget to fund urgently needed Ebola research. Europe has no shortage of organisations with expertise, but we lacked the political will to get involved. Now, we are on the right track to fight Ebola and give hope to all patients, their families and communities affected by the virus. 

“Importantly, sound scientific data will be produced and shared for public good to ensure that scientists across the globe can have access, increasing their chance for a long-awaited breakthrough in our fight against Ebola epidemic.”