GENEVA: The WHO on Monday called for Covid-19 vaccine manufacturers to give Covax first refusal on new doses, or commit half of their volumes to the global jab equity scheme.
World Health Organisation Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said manufacturers should turn their attention to the Covax facility, which has struggled to get donation-funded doses to poorer countries. Tedros voiced his frustration that several poor countries have been unable to immunise their health workers, the elderly and other populations most vulnerable to severe Covid-19 disease.
Some rich countries meanwhile, having bought up vaccine supply, are drawing up preparations to start vaccinating children, he said.
Tedros has called for a massive global effort to vaccinate at least 10 percent of the population of all countries by September, and at least 30 percent by the end of the year.
That will require an additional 250 million doses by September, with 100 million doses in June and July alone.
Published in Dawn, June 8th, 2021