Would You Deny Potential Life-Saving Drug to This Little Boy? (HIS PICTURE INSIDE)
A leading drug manufacturer has so far. It's a complicated story.
7-year-old Josh Hardy of Fredricksburg, VA has survived four bouts with kidney cancer, as well as heart failure and a bone marrow transplant. He's pretty resilient. But a drug that could potentially greatly help him in his battle is being denied by a pharmaceutical company.
Josh is now battling an illness called adenovirus, which often sets in when a person's immune system is compromised due to bone marrow transplants and chemotherapy. After being cancer free for two years, doctors had found last November Josh had a bone marrow disorder due to his chemotherapy. The bone marrow transplant was successful, but in a Catch-22 situation, his immune system cannot fight this new virus.
Doctors have to suppress his immune system to allow the bone marrow cells to grow and work, and this has let the adenovirus set in.
While at St. Jude's Childrens Reasearch hospital doctors recommended he be treated with a new drug called Brincidofovir, which can clear up this virus within two weeks.
However, the drug has yet to receive FDA approval, and it's maker, Chimerix, has refused to allow the boy to be treated with it. They have treated hundreds of patients in the past, but how say it's too expensive, and they are focused on seeking FDA approval instead.
The drug could be administered through what is called a "compassionate use" program that in desperate situations allows a patient to be treated with an unapproved medication.
Kenneth Moch, the CEO of Chimerix, reportedly told Peter Johnson Jr. of Fox News that even a bedside visit to see this little boy would still not change his mind.
Fox News posted the following information for people to weigh in on the issue, or offer their support:
To help save Josh, Hardy (his mother) is encouraging supporters to call Chimerix at 919-806-1074; supporters can also e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet @chimerix using the hashtag #savejosh.
Josh Hardy is pictured below (Courtesy of FoxNews.com)