‘The clock is ticking’ on Josh’s life as Fredericksburg family battles drug company

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FREDERICKSBURG, Va. (WTVR)--Seven-year-old Josh Hardy has been cancer free for two years, but just shy of his eighth birthday, he's still fighting for his life.

UPDATE: Chimerix will now send medicine to dying Fredericksburg boy

He has already already beaten cancer four times, but it's something else compromising his life.

Now he has a rare virus that took advantage of his compromised immune system during a life-saving bone marrow transplant.

It’s another obstacle Josh's parents are afraid he might not be able to conquer.

He is in critical condition and his mother said that the “clock is ticking.”

Josh's doctors say there is only one drug that could rid his body of the virus.

But right now the company who makes it says they can't give it to him.

Mae Staton, Josh's grandmother calls him a "tough little boy,” after all he was just 9-months-old when "he was diagnosed with cancer tumors on his kidney's.

He defeated the cancer and battled it again three more times.

Most recently, his grandmother says, he went back in November for a checkup and they found “something irregular in his blood, and they did some tests  and determined he needed a bone marrow transplant."

But the fight since his January transplant has been tough.

"He was in a coma for 16 days, Staton says.

And it was coming out of the coma in mid-January that his next fight began.

He contracted a virus; one that doctors say requires one particular drug called Brincidofovir (brenz-a-dof-a-veer).

"This virus has really done a number on his little body, he's bleeding internally and he's in a lot of pain,” Staton says.

Doctors at St. Jude’s tell his parents that he needs this drug that this Chimerex company has developed."

The company which makes the drug says it can't be released outside of controlled clinical trials.

They released a statement that reads:

"This is one of hundreds of requests that Chimerix has received for the compassionate use of Brincidofovir.  Providing Brincidofovir in any of these situations where there is currently limited evidence to suggest that Brincidofovir would be helpful, could very likely place the entire development program at risk."

The family, which has spoken with the company, continues to plead their case.

“Mr. Moch, have a heart, this child needs to live, release this drug, so that he can have a healthy, happy life."

Friends of the family are planning a protest outside the North Carolina based company on Thursday.

We will continue to provide updates as they develop.

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  • Heather Garrett

    See, I don’t get that, why with hold it if it’s a life or death situation? I don’t see how it can jeopardize the program unless they intend to include his results in their clinical findings. Just let them try. Keep it separate from any trials ect that are already in place. Perhaps there’s something the FDA could do?

  • Manalishi.

    This is a government regulation issue. Drug companies cannot just dole out unapproved products outside of trial. This article is a gross misrepresentation of fault.

    • Zackary

      Yes they can. Investigational drugs CAN be given in circumstances like these. It’s called ‘compassionate drug use’.

  • George Douglas

    Okay, the Obamas always tell everyone how compassionate they are. They are very wealthy. So is John Kerry. Why don’t they step up and save this little boy by buying the medicine for him? Where are Warren Buffet and Bill Gates? They could easily pay for the medicine, but they sit quietly ignoring the dying little boy.

    • Kelly Lipford

      George, you realize that you’re feeding the stereotype that conservatives lack critical thinking and reading comprehension skills. Money is not at issue here. Read it again, and this time try to REALLY pay attention to it.

    • Chelsea

      The company is not refusing to give the medicine to the child because of financial issues alone. The company that manufactures this drug has been in the trial phase for years because of the enormous amount of extra funds needed to make compassionate use possible. If you actually took the time to look further into this issue you would find out that this company stopped compassionate use two years ago so that they could focus on finishing up development and getting the drug FDA approved for the majority of patients in need. Montani, before you bash people maybe you should be the one to check your facts; but then again, ignorance is bliss.

  • montani42

    Kelly, the CEO said this morning the reason his company could not provide the medicine, which it had provided to several hundred people previously, was due to the financial condition of his company. YOU need to learn a little about the situation and quit relying on liberal media for your information. I am sure the CEO would be a much better source of the reason why the medicine would not be provided than a news room.

    • Billy Bar

      “I am sure the CEO would be a much better source of the reason why the medicine would not be provided than a news room.” You can not be serious montani.

  • sw

    My heart goes out to this family. I know as a mother I would feel the same way as they do but unfortunately when being objective you have to understand the position of the drug company. Do any of you think this is the first request they have received for this drug? I totally understand the reason for compassionate use but to others who think it will not mess up a drug study think again. All information related to this drug will be submitted to the fda along with the study. It does mess up a controlled study. Drug companies are a business. They are not government or run by the government and are in business to make money. Most will not risk the trials of their drugs they have spent millions to reseach and develop because of a few people who want to try it outside of their control. If this was done with every drug then most drug companies would be out of business. My heart goes out to this child and his family. I pray there is another solution for this little boy.

  • Paula Kennedy

    I don’t care about Obama, Kerry, gates or any other billionaire every person has spoke of. This is a sick child that can be cured with a certain medication and it is not being given to him. I can 100 % guarantee you that if that boy was the son of the CEO of this company he would have this medicine and none of us would ever know about it. I for one am sick of huge medical companies having all the rights why people die from Cancer, Diabetes, and so many other illness’s that have been proven the Government has the cure for. This child deserves to live and there is a cure. Do not care about test results, FDA, or any other thing….let this precious angel have a chance at a normal disease free life!!!!

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