The holder of the World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday implored rich countries to make sure they really need to order additional COVID-19 vaccines, so as not to undermine attempts to deliver them to poorer countries.
Wealthy nations have purchased billions of vaccines while some developing countries have few or none. European countries have given financial support to the UN campaign to bring vaccines to the world’s most vulnerable people, called COVAX, and are considering sharing some of their own doses, although they have not specified when.
On Friday, the leaders of the industrial powers of the Group of Seven promised to accelerate the advance of global vaccination and to support « economic and equitable access to vaccines. » They mentioned a collective fund of $ 7.5 billion for UN-supported efforts.
WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus thanked the G-7 countries for their “significant” promises, but added after holding talks with German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier on Monday that “even if you have the money, if you can’t use it to buy vaccines… having the money doesn’t mean anything ”.
He indicated that the strategies of some countries towards the manufacturers to ensure more vaccines « affect the agreements with COVAX and even the quantity that was designated for COVAX was reduced because of this. » He did not mention the countries or provide further details.
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