Uncategorized

UNICEF says to ship 2 billion COVID-19 vaccines to poor nations in 2021

LONDON: Nearly 2 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines will be shipped and flown to developing countries next year in a “mammoth operation”, the U.N. children’s agency UNICEF said on Monday, as world leaders vowed to ensure the fair distribution of vaccines.

UNICEF said it was working with over 350 airlines and freight companies to deliver vaccines and 1 billion syringes to poor countries such as Burundi, Afghanistan and Yemen as part of COVAX, a global COVID-19 vaccine allocation plan with the World Health Organization (WHO).

“This invaluable collaboration will go a long way to ensure that enough transport capacity is in place for this historic and mammoth operation,” said Etleva Kadilli, director of UNICEF’s Supply Division, in a statement.

COVAX – co-led by GAVI vaccine group, the WHO and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations – aims to discourage governments from hoarding COVID-19 vaccines and to focus on first vaccinating the most at risk in every country.

At a G20 summit this weekend, leaders of the biggest 20 world economies pledged to ensure the equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, drugs and tests so that poorer countries are not left out.

Even before the pandemic hit, access to vaccines was unequal with around 20 million babies not receiving vaccines that could save them from serious diseases, death, disability and ill health, according to the WHO.

“We need all hands on deck as we get ready to deliver COVID-19 vaccine doses, syringes and more personal protective equipment to protect frontline workers around the globe,” said UNICEF’S Kadilli, who is working with the Pan American Health Organization and the International Air Transport Association.

UNICEF’s role with COVAX stems from its status as the largest single vaccine buyer in the world.

It said it procures more than 2 billion doses of vaccines annually for routine immunisation and outbreak response on behalf of nearly 100 countries.

Drugmakers and research centres worldwide are racing to develop COVID-19 vaccines, with large global trials of several of the candidates involving tens of thousands of participants well underway.

Pfizer Inc and BioNTech could secure emergency U.S. and European authorisation for their COVID-19 vaccine next month after final trial results showed a 95% success rate and no serious side effects.

Moderna Inc last week released preliminary data for its vaccine showing 94.5% effectiveness.

The better-than-expected results from the two vaccines, both developed with new messenger RNA (mRNA) technology, have raised hopes for an end to a pandemic that has killed more than 1.3 million people and wreaked havoc upon economies and daily life.

 

Support Ethical Journalism. Support The Dispatch

The Dispatch is a sincere effort in ethical journalism. Truth, Accuracy, Independence, Fairness, Impartiality, Humanity and Accountability are key elements of our editorial policy. But we are still not able to generate great stories, because we don’t have adequate resources. As more and more media falls into corporate and political control, informed citizens across the world are funding independent journalism initiatives. Here is your chance to support your local media startup and help independent journalism survive. Click the link below to make a payment of your choice and be a stakeholder in public spirited journalism


 

The Dispatch is present across a number of social media platforms. Subscribe to our YouTube channel for exciting videos; join us on Facebook, Intagram and Twitter for quick updates and discussions. We are also available on the Telegram. Follow us on Pinterest for thousands of pictures and graphics. We care to respond to text messages on WhatsApp at 8082480136 [No calls accepted]. To contribute an article or pitch a story idea, write to us at [email protected] |Click to know more about The Dispatch, our standards and policies