Earlier this week the New England Journal of Medicine published an article revealing a number of Vietnamese patience infected with H5N1 had developed resistance to Tamiflu during their treatment. Here are some of the latest reactions to the article.
Effect Measure sensibly points out Tamiflu was never going to be a “magic bullet” in the first place:
Tamiflu was never going to get us that far in mitigating the effects of a pandemic anyway because our ability to supply, dispense and provide the collateral medical support was never there. Nor could it be effectively used on a mass population basis.
(Tyler also argued we should not put all our faith in a centralized stockpile of Tamiflu, read his policy paper here.)
Keiji Fukuda, a scientist at the WHO's global influenza programme, said some resistance was inevitable with any kind of drug.
"Whenever you use any kind of drugs, antivirals or antibiotics, you expect to see resistance develop in organs. Finding some resistance in and of itself is not surprising and is not necessarily alarming," he told Reuters.
"Whilst there is some anecdotal evidence of the build-up of resistance to antiviral drugs such as Tamiflu, at present the experience is that these drugs do work and that they should work against a pandemic strain," a Department of Health spokeswoman said.