Etika boje proti ebole

PRINCETON – Možná se nakonec bude mluvit o štěstí, že se hrstka lidí v rozvinutých zemích – čtyři ve Spojených státech a jeden ve Španělsku – nakazila ebolou. Jakkoliv tragické je to pro Thomase Duncana, jediného ze zmíněných pacientů, jenž zemřel, kdyby ke všem z více než 13 000 případů a téměř 5000 úmrtí bývalo došlo k Africe, ebola by v bohatých státech ani zdaleka nevzbudila takovou pozornost.

V tomto ohledu ebola je – nebo spíše byla – příkladem jevu, který se někdy označuje jako pravidlo 90/10: 90% lékařského výzkumu se zaměřuje na onemocnění představující pouhých 10% celosvětové zátěže nemocnosti. O smrtelné povaze viru eboly ví svět od roku 1976; protože však byly oběti chudé, neměly farmaceutické společnosti žádnou motivaci vyvíjet proti ebole vakcínu. Větší zisky mohly důvodně očekávat z léčby mužské plešatosti.

Rovněž vládní prostředky určené na výzkum jsou v blahobytných zemích neadekvátně zaměřené na nemoci zabíjející občany těchto zemí, nikoliv na malárii či průjmová onemocnění, jež mají na svědomí mnohem vyšší ztráty na životech.

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