Lower-Income Nations Likely Face Delays In Receiving COVID-19 Vaccines; Canada Pledges $380M To Supply Other Nations With Tests, Treatments, Vaccines; E.U. Weighs Donating 5% Of Vaccine Supplies

AP: Poor countries face long wait for vaccines despite promises
“With Americans, Britons, and Canadians rolling up their sleeves to receive coronavirus vaccines, the route out of the pandemic now seems clear to many in the West, even if the rollout will take many months. But for poorer countries, the road will be far longer and rougher. The ambitious initiative known as COVAX created to ensure the entire world has access to COVID-19 vaccines has secured only a fraction of the 2 billion doses it hopes to buy over the next year, has yet to confirm any actual deals to ship out vaccines and is short on cash…” (Cheng/Ghosal, 12/15).

New York Times: With First Dibs on Vaccines, Rich Countries Have ‘Cleared the Shelves’
“…While many poor nations may be able to vaccinate at most 20 percent of their populations in 2021, some of the world’s richest countries have reserved enough doses to immunize their own multiple times over. … [I]f all the doses they have claimed are delivered, the European Union could inoculate its residents twice, Britain and the United States could do so four times over, and Canada six times over, according to a New York Times analysis of data on vaccine contracts collected by Duke University, UNICEF, and Airfinity, a science analytics company…” (Twohey et al., 12/15).

Quartz: Will there be enough syringes to deliver Covid-19 vaccines?
“…The global pandemic response has been stymied by one supply shortfall after another, from yeast and toilet paper to N95 masks and virus tests—and vaccine deployment will be no exception. Meeting demand will likely be challenged by shortages of shot-giving equipment like glass vials and supplies to maintain cold storage chains, not to mention the raw vaccine materials themselves. But governments and manufacturers appear to be ahead of the curve on one key piece of vaccination equipment: syringes…” (McDonnell, 12/15).

Reuters: Canada pledges C$485 million in COVID-19 aid for other nations
“Canada will spend C$485 million ($380 million) to support COVID-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines in low- and middle-income countries, including antibody treatments, International Aid Minister Karina Gould said in a statement on Monday…” (12/14).

Reuters: E.U. weighs donating 5% of its COVID-19 vaccines to poor nations — document
“The European Union could donate 5% of the COVID-19 vaccines it has secured to poorer nations, an internal document seen by Reuters shows, in a move that risks undercutting a distribution scheme co-led by the World Health Organization. The plan, drafted by the French government, sets for the first time a clear target for E.U. vaccine donations which so far had only been considered as an option if the bloc ended up with surplus doses…” (Guarascio, 12/14).

Reuters: WHO sees “strong commitment” from Pfizer on affordable COVID vaccine
“A World Health Organization senior official said on Tuesday that the agency was in talks with Pfizer to include its COVID-19 vaccine as part of an early global roll out…” (Nebehay/Farge, 12/15).

The KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report summarized news and information on global health policy from hundreds of sources, from May 2009 through December 2020. All summaries are archived and available via search.

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