Vaccine equity is urgently needed – a global problem

Developed countries are much more likely to vaccinate their citizens, which carries the risk of prolonging the epidemic and spreading global inequality. UN News Agency explained the importance of vaccine equality before the dialogue at the UN on Monday among senior UN officials.

What is vaccine equity?

UNICEF / Francis Kokroko

A 76-year-old man shows his vaccine card after receiving the Covid-1 vaccine in Kosovo, Ghana.

Simply put, this means that all people, wherever they are, should have equal access to vaccines that protect against the Covid-1 infection.

The WHO has set a target of vaccinating per0 percent of the population in all countries by mid-2022, but achieving this goal will require more equitable access to vaccines.

The equity of the vaccine is “not rocket science, not charity. It’s in the public interest of smart public health and everyone,” said Dr. Tedros Adhanam Gabrieusas, director general of the World Health Organization (WHO).

Why is it so important?

Without moral reason no country or citizen deserves more than others, no matter how rich or poor, a contagious disorder like covid-1 like will continue to be a global threat, as long as it exists anywhere in the world.

Inadequate vaccine distribution is not only putting millions or billions of people at risk for the deadly virus, it is also allowing more deadly forms to emerge and spread around the world.

Moreover, the unequal distribution of vaccines will deepen inequality and widen the gap between rich and poor and reverse decades of hard-won progress in human development.

According to the United Nations, vaccine inequality will have a long-term impact on socio-economic recovery in low- and lower-middle-income countries and will delay progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). According to the UNDP, eight out of ten people directly driven into poverty by the epidemic will live in the world’s poorest countries by 2030.

Estimates also suggest that the economic impact of Covid-1 of low-income countries could last until 20224, when high-income countries could reach per capita GDP growth by the end of this year.

Is it working?

Confirmed case of COVID-19 (September 15, 2021)

Case confirmed by WHO COVID-19 (September 15, 2021)

Not according to Dr. Tedros, who said in April of this year that “vaccine equity is the challenge of our time … and we are failing.”

The study found that by 2021, enough vaccines will be created to cover 70 percent of the 7.8 billion population. However, while most vaccines are reserved for rich countries, other vaccine-producing countries are restricting dose exports to ensure that their own citizens receive the vaccine first, a practice called “vaccine nationalism.” The decision to give a booster vaccine to already vaccinated citizens instead of giving priority to vaccinated people in poor countries has been cited as an example of this trend in some countries.

Nevertheless, according to WHO data, the good news is that as of September 15, more than 5.5 billion doses have been administered worldwide, although two shots are needed for most of the vaccines available, although the number of protected individuals is much lower.

Which countries are getting vaccinated at the moment?

Simply put, rich countries are getting most of the vaccines, many poor countries are even struggling to vaccinate a small number of citizens.

As of Sept. 15, only 3.07 percent of people in low-income countries have been vaccinated with at least one dose, according to the Global Dashboard for Vaccine Equity (founded by UNDP, WHO and Oxford University), which is more than 60.18 percent – high-income countries.

Among those who have received at least one dose of the vaccine in the United States, the vaccination rate is .90.22 percent and in the United States it is currently .25.2 percent. Other high-income and middle-income countries are not doing well; New Zealand has vaccinated 311..9 per cent of its relatively small population, although Brazil is now .3..31 per cent. However, the statistics of some of the poorest countries in the world make for a deadly read. Only 0.09 percent of the population of the Democratic Republic of Congo received a dose; In Papua New Guinea and Venezuela the rates are 1.15 percent and 20.45 percent, respectively.

Find more country specific information here.

How much does a vaccine cost?

A nurse at Sheikh Zayed Hospital in Noakhat, Mauritania, holds a dose of the vaccine.

UNICEF / Raphael Puget

A nurse at Sheikh Zayed Hospital in Noakhat, Mauritania, holds a dose of the vaccine.

UNICEF estimates that the average cost of a Covid-1 vaccine is থেকে 2 to $ 37 (there are 24 vaccines that have been approved by at least one national regulatory authority) and an estimated delivery cost of $ 3.70 per person. This represents a significant financial burden for low-income countries, where, according to the UNDP, the average per capita health expenditure is $ 41.

According to the Vaccine Equity Dashboard, without immediate global financial support, low-income countries will have to increase their healthcare spending by 57 percent to meet their goal of vaccinating 70 percent of their citizens.

What is the UN doing to make vaccines more equitable?

The Covid-1 vaccine dose provided through the Covax facility in Goma, the former Democratic Republic of Covar.

UNICEF / Arlette Bashiji

The Covid-1 vaccine dose provided through the Covax facility in Goma, the former Democratic Republic of Covar.

The WHO and UNICEF have worked with other organizations to establish and operate the Covid-1V vaccine global access facility, known as Kovacs. Launched in April 2020, the WHO called it a “global collaboration to accelerate the development, production and equitable access to Covid-1 tests, treatments and vaccines.”

Its goal is to ensure fair and equitable access to every country in the world on the basis of necessity and purchasing power.

Currently, CoVAX has 141 participants, according to the UN-backed Cow Alliance, but this is not the only way countries can use the vaccine because they can also enter into bilateral agreements with manufacturers.

Will equal access to vaccines end the epidemic?

Students at a school in Cambodia study despite the Kovid-1 pandemic epidemic.

UNICEF / Antoine Rob

Students at a school in Cambodia study despite the Kovid-1 pandemic epidemic.

This is an important step, obviously, and in many rich countries, life is returning to somewhat normal for many people, even if some epidemic protocols still exist. The situation in the least developed countries is more challenging. While the supply of vaccines provided under the CoVAX facility is welcomed worldwide, weak health systems, including a shortage of health workers, are contributing to increasing challenges to soil access and distribution.

And the problems of equity do not disappear when vaccines are physically supplied in the country; In some countries, inequality of distribution may still persist in both the rich and the poor.

It is also important to remember that providing equal access to healthcare is certainly not a new problem, but the focus of the Sustainable Development Goals and, more precisely, SDG 3 for health and well-being, which calls for universal achievement. Health care and affordable medicines and vaccines for all.

SDG Moment

The Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Dr. Tedros Adhanam Ghebreyasus, the head of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), Achim Steiner, and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) will take part in the Vera Summit. A conversation about vaccine equity as part of the SDG Moment. Watch here on UN web TV.

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