New Zealand donates 1.6 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to the COVAX program

New Zealand donates 1.6 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to the COVAX program

File photo: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern (Reuters)

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced this Thursday It will donate more than 1.6 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine – enough to protect 800,000 people – through the COVAX vaccine fair exchange mechanism, Which aims to ensure pollination in developing countries.

Ardern was the first leader to promise doses at a party hosted by the WHO-linked Gavi Vaccine Alliance on Thursday that is increasing investments to deliver vaccines to 92 countries. For their part, the European countries are like Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden pledged new funds for the program.

An AstraZeneca / Oxford vaccine package file image is part of the first shipment of COVID-19 injection that was delivered to Ghana under the COVAX program, at Accra International Airport, Ghana. February 24, 2021. (Reuters) / Francis Cocoroco / Archive
An AstraZeneca / Oxford vaccine package file image is part of the first shipment of COVID-19 injection that was delivered to Ghana under the COVAX program, at Accra International Airport, Ghana. February 24, 2021. (Reuters) / Francis Cocoroco / Archive

Senior UN officials, finance and vaccines at the event called on rich countries to donate overdoses of COVID-19 vaccines to this international program to supply low- and middle-income countries, in an effort to put the global economy back on the right track.

In the hypothetical act of the Gavi Alliance, officials also requested another $ 2,000 million for June, which would allow up to 1,800 million doses to be purchased in 2021. To date, COVAX has shipped over 38 million doses to 111 countries.

“The supply in the world is incredibly scarce right now. But also We know that many high-income countries have requested more vaccines than they need.Gavi CEO Seth Berkeley said. He called for the additional doses to be shared “as soon as possible to cover the high-risk population during this limited supply period.”

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Many countries have money to spend on doses, but there are no fast deliveries. I would like to stress the importance of countries with potential for a surplus of vaccines to deliver them as soon as possible, “ Said World Bank President David Malpass.

At the virtual Gavi event, World Bank President David Malpass called for a more equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines (Reuters / Florence Law)
At the virtual Gavi event, World Bank President David Malpass called for a more equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines (Reuters / Florence Law)

WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus claimed that some countries that participated in COVAX received no doses, none received enough, and some did not receive vaccine allocations in the second round in time. “There is still an alarming and growing disparity in the global distribution of vaccinesHe warned in the event.

UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore called on the wealthiest countries to invest generously in COVAX and donate surplus doses as it was the only way to end the epidemic and put “the global economy back on track”.

Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg said another $ 22 billion is needed for the Tool Access Accelerator Against COVID-19 (ACT), which includes COVAX and also supports treatments and tests. These numbers may seem high, but they are small compared to the global economic loss if this crisis continues. He said the new variants of the virus make it clear that we have to act faster.

With information from Reuters

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