Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth, Texas became the first hospital in the nation in 2016 to house a life-saving investigational drug called miltefosine (trade name, Impavido) used to treat primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) caused by the parasite, Naegleria fowleri.


This was prompted after the drug, originally approved to treat another parasitic infection, leishmaniasis, was used to successfully treat 12-year-old Arkansas girl, Kali Hardig in 2013.

Kyle Cares, an amoeba awareness organization started by the parents of Kyle Lewis, a boy that died from PAM in 2010 at Cook Children’s, saw this success in 2013 and contacted the drug manufacturer about making the drug more widely available across the nation.

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“It means so much to us that Cook Children’s has this drug today,” Jeremy Lewis said in 2016. “In the worst case for us, Kyle passing away, Cook Children’s could not have been better to us. I’m glad it will be the home for miltefosine in the state of Texas.”

Today, the number of hospitals with Impavido on-site for immediate use has blossomed to 21. This  includes 10 hospitals in Florida (Tampa, St. Petersburg, Orlando, Fort Myers, Gainesville, Lakeland, Miami and Hollywood), three in Texas (Fort Worth, Dallas and Houston) and hospitals in North and South Carolina (Charlotte and Columbia), Pennsylvania (Pittsburgh), Minnesota (Minneapolis), Louisiana (Shreveport), Nebraska (Omaha), Arkansas (Little Rock)and California (Pomona).


Outbreak News Radio: Naegleria fowleri and amoeba awareness: Personal stories and the great work from ‘Kyle Cares’ and ‘Swim Above Water’

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