Global vaccine program COVAX low on funds, seeks $5.2bn Business 360

Global vaccine program COVAX low on funds, seeks $5.2bn

FILE – A medical staff gives syringes with vaccination against the coronavirus and the Covid 19 disease to a doctor inside the Klunkerkranich Restaurant and night club during an ongoing vaccination campaign of the Clubkommission in Berlin, Germany, on Wednesday, January 5, 2022. Photo: AP via RSS

GENEVA: The global initiative to share coronavirus vaccines equally between rich and poor countries asked Wednesday for $5.2 billion in funds to be able to keep buying doses in the coming months.

The UN-backed program known as COVAX has delivered just over 1 billion doses since shipments started nearly a year ago.

The initial goal was to deliver 2 billion doses by the end of 2021, but COVAX’s lack of cash when vaccine deals were being made gave it a late start, and most of the world’s vaccine doses have gone to wealthy nations who locked in contracts. As things stand now, less than 10% of the people in low-income countries have received at least one dose, while more than 60% of the world’s overall population has been vaccinated — some with three or four doses.

Seth Berkley, the CEO of GAVI, the global health organisation that co-founded the COVAX initiative, said it was key to supplying poor countries with vaccine shots now and in the future but “we right now are basically out of money.”

By RSS/AP

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