International War “Pandemic” Operation
The coronavirus vaccine is a little dawn under the haze of the COVID-19 epidemic, but this light of hope cannot be sprinkled everywhere in the world at present.
According to the data of Johns Hopkins University in the United States, although Kenya, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan and Ukraine have more than 1.4 million cases of COVID-19, they can only pass the WHO-led COVID-19, which is specifically designed for poorer countries. Vaccine implementation plan to obtain vaccine.
On the other hand, Canada had reported only 432,870 infections as of the 10th, but it had reached a direct deal with vaccine manufacturers and bought enough doses for each Canadian citizen to be vaccinated five times.
The uneven distribution of vaccines is a problem repeatedly raised by Tedros Tedros, Director-General of the World Health Organization during the epidemic.
“Every government wants to do everything it can to protect its people, and for granted.” “But now there’s a real risk that the poorest and most vulnerable may be trampled in a rush to buy a vaccine,” he said at a press conference in November.
“People’s Vaccine Alliance”: Rich countries hoard excessive vaccines in violation of human rights obligations
According to CNN’s official news on December 9, the “People’s Vaccine Alliance”, an international vaccine supervision agency, said that rich countries have hoarded excessive amounts of coronavirus vaccines, enough for their citizens to vaccinate three times. In the 67 poorer countries, only one in ten people are expected to be vaccinated by the end of 2021.
While the rich countries make up just 14% of the world’s population, they now have 53% of the most promising vaccines, while developing countries are lagging behind in the global sprint to end the coronavirus.
According to the Guardian on the 10th, the Gates Foundation of the United States warned that rich countries have left the rest of the world behind in terms of the coronavirus vaccine. The agreements reached by rich countries to ensure treatment may deny the world’s poorest people no vaccination without urgent action.
According to the data of Duke University Center for Global Health Innovation in the United States, before any candidate vaccine is approved for market, the confirmed vaccine purchase reached 7.2 billion doses, and another 2.4 billion doses are currently under negotiation.
These direct transactions between high-income countries and pharmaceutical companies have resulted in only a small number of vaccines that can be used for fair distribution globally.
“Hoarding vaccines has seriously undermined the global effort to ensure that everyone, everywhere, is protected from COVID-19.” “The rich countries’ buying the vast majority of the world’s vaccine supplies violate their human rights obligations,” said Steve Cockburn, head of economic and social justice at Amnesty International.
The People’s Vaccine Coalition urged pharmaceutical companies to share their technology and intellectual property rights with the World Health Organization and called on governments to commit to providing vaccines to developing countries to narrow economic disparities between countries as they seek to emerge from the devastating COVID-19 crisis.
Vaccine distribution is full of challenges
In addition to the equitable distribution of vaccines, financial support, infrastructure, logistics allocation, information flow, etc. will all be obstacles to vaccination.
Saudi Arabia’s Arab News reported on the 13th that the cost of vaccination is a challenge even for developed countries. The economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic has strained the health budgets of some governments.
For developing countries, the challenge is even greater. They must not only find the resources needed to buy vaccines, but also build the infrastructure needed to carry out mass vaccinations. For example, vaccines from Pfizer/BioNTech need to be stored at minus 70 degrees Celsius (-94 degrees Fahrenheit), while vaccines from Moderna in the United States must be stored at minus 20 degrees Celsius (-4 degrees Fahrenheit).
In contrast, vaccines developed by AstraZeneca in cooperation with Oxford University can be stored at standard refrigeration temperatures. This requires an effective cold chain to store and transport vaccines, as well as the necessary medical infrastructure and personnel to manage the population.
Al Jazeera in Qatar reported on the 11th that Benjamin Kajina, a senior researcher in vaccines at the University of Cape Town, said: “In view of the high global demand, especially the negative impact of the pandemic on the economy, the affordability of vaccines is a problem.” WHO has previously said that it will cost nearly $5.7 billion to vaccinate key populations against COVID-19, including another 15% to 20% of materials, training, logistics and community mobilization costs.
In addition to the unfair distribution of vaccines, low-income countries face major challenges in distributing COVID-19 vaccines, Duke University pointed out.
National vaccine plans, such as India, Ethiopia and Peru, are still under development, but vaccine distribution faces several key challenges, such as insufficient cold chain capacity in rural and remote areas, lack of needle supply and proper disposal capacity for medical waste, lack of trained vaccination professionals, and the treatment of COVID-19 and potential epidemics. Factors such as mistrust and misinformation of seedlings will hinder the promotion and vaccination of vaccines.
Vaccines should be public goods for the benefit of all mankind.
If about 50 high-income countries monopolize the first batch of 2 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccine (which is 80% effective), 33% of the world’s cases can avoid death, a study by the Global Alliance for Vaccine Immunization.
However, if the same vaccine is fairly distributed according to the population size of each country, up to 61% of deaths can be avoided globally. Fair distribution of vaccines requires not only the efforts of each country in vaccine research and development, but also the joint global cooperation.
According to the Arab News, vaccination is crucial to make the distribution of vaccines fair and not driven by the influence of developed countries. Some national leaders are trying to gain support from the people through vaccines.
Although this practice can curb the number of deaths and infections, it is a “very short-sighted” and “almost self-defeating” strategy for anyone.
AFP previously reported that UNICEF coronavirus vaccine coordinator Benjamin Schreiber said it was vital that all countries have equitable access to the vaccine. “We really need to avoid the situation where rich countries ‘devour’ all vaccines,” he said.
“No one should be prevented from getting a life-saving vaccine because of the country they live in or how much money they have in their pocket,” said Anna Marriott, health policy manager at Oxfam charity.
According to Al Jazeera, Qatar, the director of the African Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, called vaccine distribution a “moral issue” and called for a special meeting of the United Nations to discuss the issue to avoid “North and South distrust of vaccines” because the coronavirus vaccines are “a common interest”.
How to try to avoid the unfair distribution of vaccines and how to make people in poor countries and regions survive the catastrophic coronavirus epidemic requires a global effort.
As UN Secretary-General Guterres emphasized at the 75th special session of the United Nations General Assembly on COVID-19 on December 3: “The COVID-19 vaccine should become a global public good for all people around the world.”