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GHS promises insurance cover for Ebola vaccine trials volunteers

The Ghana Health Service has promised comprehensive international-standard insurance cover to all volunteers taking part in the Ebola vaccine trial.
Dr Ama Kyerewaa Edwin, a Member of the Ghana Health Service Ethics Committee, revealed that the insurance cover would cater for the medical and auxiliary needs of any volunteer who may experience any adverse reaction as a result of the vaccine, during the phase I and II trials scheduled for Hohoe and Kintampo respectively.

“Participants are comprehensively insured to international standard in case anything goes wrong, that you need medical care, you are not going to pay out of pocket, or it’s even your national health insurance that will take care of you. There is a compressive insurance package that will take care of all that,” Dr Edwin said at a public sensitization forum in Ho.

On the GHc 200 compensation to volunteers, she explained: “In terms of research, you [participants] are not paid for volunteering but you will be compensated for your time and traveling in and out of the research centre. That’s why the ethics review committee decided on the 200 Ghana cedis per scheduled visit.

“The compensation given to participants for time and income loss should not be too little, because if it’s too little it will be exploitative and shouldn’t be too much, because if it’s too much, it will be coercive.”

Acting Deputy Chief Executive of the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) in charge Safety Monitoring and Clinical Trials, Mrs Delese Mimi Darko also assured volunteers that due diligence was followed by the regulator concerning safety issues before issuing the clearance for the clinical trial.
The intended Ebola vaccine trial being spearheaded by the University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS) in the Volta region was met with high suspicion and resistance. This necessitated the sensitization forum after Parliament called for the suspension of the exercise.
Credit: Starrfmonline

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