World Health Organisation-WHO Director General Tedros Ghebreyesus has called for the creation of an Emergency Task Force bringing together all countries with the capacity to produce vaccines to at least double vaccine production and ensure equitable distribution.
The global death toll from Covid-19 has crossed four million, as a growing disparity in vaccine access leaves poorer nations exposed to outbreaks of more infectious strains.
Dr Tedros spelt out a number of actions to be taken to come up with a Global Vaccine Action Plan that include; doubling the production of vaccines and ensuring equitable distribution, through the COVAX Facility.
To coordinate the implementation and required funding.
And to support the readiness and capacity of countries to roll out immunization programs, while addressing the serious problem of vaccine reluctance.
The institutions will include the World Health Organization, GAVI the Vaccine Alliance and international financial institutions able to mobilize relevant pharmaceutical companies and manufacturers and other key players.
He said to fill the vaccine shortage, countries must deploy, on a planetary scale, the largest public health effort ever seen in history.
According to Dr Tedros: ” immunization equity is the greatest moral challenge of our time.”
Adding that: “It is also, from a practical point of view, a necessity. Until we are all vaccinated, no one will be out of danger.”
He noted that global recovery requires vaccination on a global scale.
Dr Tedros called the four million figure an underestimate of the true toll saying, the world is at a perilous point in this pandemic.
“The tragedy of four million lives lost as a result of this pandemic must prompt us to act urgently to end it, for the good of all, everywhere,” said Dr Tedros.
While acknowledging that vaccines offer a silver lining Dr Tedros regretted that most of the world remains in the shadows.
“Sure, vaccines offer a silver lining – but most of the world remains in the shadows. The virus is always one step ahead of vaccine distribution. This pandemic is far from being contained: more than half of its victims have died this year.” He said.
He castigated countries hoarding vaccines saying: “Vaccine nationalism where a handful of nations have taken the lion’s share is morally indefensible and an ineffective public health strategy against a respiratory virus that is mutating quickly and becoming increasingly effective at moving from human to human.”
Also read https://www.kbc.co.ke/who-interleukin-6-receptor-covid-19/