8/26/2014

Tax incentives and a willingness to pay for treatments in the U.S. have encouraged drugmakers to develop therapies for rare diseases, but treatments for Ebola and other diseases that primarily threaten less-developed countries are often overlooked. A recent law offers a voucher for a fast-track review to any company whose drug candidate for any of 16 neglected diseases gets FDA approval, and the review voucher can be sold to another drugmaker. Such a voucher paired with a cash prize could spur the development of an Ebola treatment, though HHS would have to add Ebola to the list of eligible diseases, says Duke University health economist David Ridley, who helped develop the voucher plan.

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