Archive - April 1, 2015

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Were PCVs Used as Test Animals for Meflouine?
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Summer Books From Two Fine RPCV Writers

Were PCVs Used as Test Animals for Meflouine?

A comment on the WSJ Law Blog: http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2015/03/27/former-peace-corps-volunteers-sues-over-malaria-drug/ Commander Bill Manofsky USN(ret) wrote this comment in the Wall Street Journal following the article that appeared about RPCV Sara Thompson (Burkina Faso 2010-12) Sueing The Peace Corps Over Malaria Drug Mefloquine was invented by the US Army at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR) during the Vietnam War. For a history of how poorly this was handled, do a Google search for the full text version of the article “A lesson learnt: the rise and fall of Lariam and Halfan” written by Dr. Ashley Croft, former infectious disease specialist for the British military and their expert on Lariam.
The drug was approved by the FDA as a treatment for malaria in 1976 and as a prophylaxis in 1989. In both situations, the safety trials were skipped. The 1989 testing was performed by the CDC on healthy Peace Corps volunteers. The US Army . . .

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Summer Books From Two Fine RPCV Writers

Karl Luntta (Botswana 1978-80) A swimming pool in the Kalahari Desert, the ice skates of a boy in a wheelchair, and a midnight train ride in the cool African night form the backdrop of the eight diverse stories in Swimming. Some of the stories take place in Africa, others in the United States, but in all of them, the characters confront cultural and racial differences, both historically and in the present. In “A Virgin Twice,” an American teaching in Botswana struggles to understand a village’s response to a violent assault. In “Jeff Call Beth,” a white American father attempts to connect with the daughter he left behind in Africa. And in the title story, “Swimming,” a Danish expatriate dying of cancer decides to build an Olympic-sized swimming pool in the Kalahari Desert. All of these characters are clinging to emotional survival in a complex world, confronted by a moment or element . . .

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