Lhe Covax system aims to provide anti-Covid vaccines to 20% of the population of nearly 200 participating countries and territories this year, but most importantly it includes a funding mechanism that allows 92 low- and middle-income economies to access in precious doses.
It was set up to try to prevent rich countries from monopolizing all the doses of vaccine which are still manufactured in too small quantities to meet global demand.
Founded by the World Health Organization (WHO), the Vaccine Alliance (Gavi) and the Coalition for Outbreak Preparedness Innovations (Cepi), Covax has made deals with manufacturers for two billion doses in 2021 and has the opportunity to buy another billion. This includes 1.1 billion doses from the Serum Institute of India (SII), which produces the AstraZeneca and Novavax vaccines.
WHO Southeast Asia posted photos of the first shipments loaded onto a truck at SII’s manufacturing plant in Pune, western India, on Twitter.
— WHO South-East Asia (@WHOSEARO) February 23, 2021
SII has already provided the Indian government with millions of doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine as well as other poor countries.
Serum Institute of India boss Adar Poonawalla on Sunday urged countries awaiting supplies to be « patients », claiming that he had been ordered to give priority to “Huge needs” from India.
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, head of the WHO, accused some rich countries on Monday of “Know” the Covax device by continuing to approach manufacturers directly to gain access to more doses.
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