Biden announces “no strings attached” global vaccine donation | Coronavirus pandemic news

U.S. President Joe Biden announces donation 500 million Provide Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine doses to the poorest countries in the world to help speed the end of the pandemic, “no strings attached.”

Biden is keen to improve his multilateral qualifications during his first visit as a leader, and on Thursday saw the donation as a bold move, demonstrating that the United States recognizes its responsibility to the world and its citizens.

“The United States is providing these 5 billion doses without strings attached. There are no strings attached,” Biden said in a speech with Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla in the British seaside resort of Cabis Bay. . G7 summit.

“Our vaccine donation does not include pressure to seek favors or potential concessions. We do this to save lives and end this pandemic, nothing more,” he said.

The COVID-19 vaccine provided through the COVAX Global Initiative arrived at Mogadishu Airport in Somalia [File: Farah Abdi Warsameh/AP Photo]

The U.S. pledges to purchase and donate 500 million doses of Pfizer drugs for global distribution Kovacs 92 low-income countries and the African Union.

Biden is facing increasing pressure to outline his global vaccine sharing plan, especially in Unfair supply It has become more obvious around the world, and the demand for injections in the United States has also increased A sharp decline In recent weeks.

Gayle Smith, the global COVID coordinator for the U.S. state, said: “We strongly believe that, given the lack of global coverage, it is absolutely critical to take such a major step to get more vaccines into the system as soon as possible.” department.

She said at a press conference on Thursday: “These vaccines will be available in August, although we are launching the announced 80 million doses.”

Officials stated that the goal is to distribute 200 million doses by the end of the year. The remaining 300 million doses will be shipped in the first half of 2022.

So far, COVAX has distributed only 81 million doses, and parts of the world, especially in Africa, have not received any shipments.

A woman is vaccinated at Yaba Continental Hospital in Lagos, Nigeria [File: Sunday Alamba/AP Photo]

Several countries in Central and South America, where there are COVID-19 cases Rise again, And has not made any meaningful progress in its vaccination activities.

Last week, Biden announced a sharing plan 25 million “surplus” Vaccine dose. The White House stated that most of the dose will be used for COVAX, while approximately 6 million doses will be used directly in various countries.

After most of last year’s number of new cases and deaths ranked first in the world, the rapid vaccination program in the United States now positions it as the leader of the global recovery.

almost 64% Of American adults received at least one dose of the vaccine, and the average number of new positive cases and deaths in the United States is now lower than at any time since the beginning of the pandemic.

Oxfam, an anti-poverty campaign organization, welcomed the statement and called for more measures to increase global vaccine production.

“Of course, these 500 million doses of vaccines are welcome because they will help more than 250 million people, but compared to the demand around the world, this is still a drop in the bucket,” said Niko Lusiani, head of vaccines at Oxfam America.

Luciani said in a statement: “We need to transition to a more decentralized vaccine production so that qualified manufacturers around the world can produce billions of low-cost vaccines on their own terms, without being restricted by intellectual property rights.”

Another obstacle, especially in some poor countries, is the infrastructure for transporting vaccines, which usually must be stored at very cold temperatures.

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About the Author: Agnes Zang