WHO claims $28 billion funding gap in program to deliver Covid-19 vaccines, tests & treatments to poorest countries
A senior World Health Organization official has said that the group is looking at ways to fill a huge $28 billion funding gap in their program to tackle Covid-19 in low-income countries.
Speaking on Tuesday, World Health Organization (WHO) senior adviser Bruce Aylward who heads up the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator program, said financing was proving a “real challenge.”
Aylward told Geneva-based journalists that the WHO was looking at new financial instruments to help fill a $28 billion shortfall for the program.
“It’s a real challenge in today’s fiscal environment despite the fact that this is the best deal in town,” Aylward noted, adding “this will pay itself off in 36 hours once we get trade and travel moving again.”
The ACT program is the WHO program leading the fight against Covid-19 and aims to deliver vaccines, tests and treatments to the world’s poorest countries.
Of the $28 billion, $5 billion alone is needed to reach the Covax goal of supplying two billion vaccine doses to poorer countries. The Covax facility aims to ensure vaccines reach people in participating countries as quickly as possible.
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“Right now financing is what stands between us and getting out of this pandemic,” he added.
Aylward also claimed that the WHO was in talks with Pfizer to include its Covid-19 vaccine as part of an early global rollout.
The WHO adviser said there was a “strong commitment” from Pfizer to set prices at levels appropriate to poorer populations.
Wealthy nations have come under fire from international bodies and leaders in the Global South regarding access to Covid-19 tools.
Last week, the director of Africa’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, John Nkengasong, called on rich nations to stop hoarding Covid vaccines and share their excess supply.
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Source:RT World News