Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, said in a statement that some G7 and European Union (EU) countries have provided $ 4.3 billion in new funding to finance the fair distribution of Covid-19 vaccines, and thanked the country leaders. “These funds and donations bring us one step closer to achieving our goal of starting the vaccination of healthcare workers and the elderly in all countries within the first 100 days of 2021,” said Ghebreyesus.
Stating that the G7 countries are leading, but all countries need to take steps, Ghebreyesus said, “We still face a gap of at least $ 22.9 billion to fully finance fair vaccine distribution”.
“IF THERE IS NO VACCINE TO BUY, MONEY DOES NOT MATTER”
“Money doesn’t matter if there is no vaccine to buy,” said Ghebreyesus, claiming that some countries undermined the COVAX agreement, which ensures fair vaccine distribution around the world. “Currently, some high-income countries have contracts with Covid-19 vaccine manufacturers that undermine the deals COVAX has and reduce the number of doses COVAX can buy. Even if we have funds, we can only give Covid-19 vaccines to poor countries if high-income countries respect the agreements made by COVAX and cooperate. “
SHARE 5 PERCENT OF FRANCE VACCINES
Stating that he met with French President Emmanuel Macron, Ghebreyesus said, “I had a very fruitful meeting with Macron and I would like to thank him for his commitment to share 5 percent of France’s doses with COVAX.”
“EQUAL VACCINE DISTRIBUTION IN THE WORLD IS IN THE BENEFIT OF HIGH-INCOME COUNTRIES”
Arguing that the longer the Covid-19 virus circulates, the more opportunities there will be for vaccines to change in a way that makes them less effective, Ghebreyesus said, “This is not a matter of help. This is a matter of epidemiology. Unless the Covid-19 epidemic ends everywhere, we will not be able to end it anywhere. For this reason, it is in the interest of all countries, including high-income countries, to ensure that healthcare professionals, the elderly and other groups at risk are ranked first for Covid-19 vaccines globally.
STRATEGIC USE OF VACCINES
Advocating that vaccines should be used strategically, Ghebreyesus said, “More Covid-19 vaccines are being developed, approved and produced. It will be enough for everyone. But for now and the rest of this year, vaccines will be a limited resource. We should use them strategically as we can.”
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