The number of Covid boosters in rich countries exceeds all jabs in poor countries
According to the analysis of the British Financial Times, the number of Covid-19 boosters launched by rich countries exceeds the total number of doses inoculated so far in poor countries.
High prices have been identified as one of the main factors contributing to the widening of vaccine inequality one year after the world’s largest vaccination campaign.
The uneven global vaccine supply means that while wealthy countries such as the United Kingdom have taken steps to provide each adult with a booster against the Omicron variant, more troublesome variants may appear in under-vaccinated areas. Since the start of the global promotion, global health authorities have issued warnings about this threat.
Nearly 16 Booster dose In 59 high-income countries around the world, every 100 people are managed-as definition Provided by the World Bank-As of December 15th, in contrast, low-income countries have fewer than 11 injections of any dose of vaccine per 100 people.
The number of boosters distributed in the wealthiest countries in the world increases by 5.5 million every day. In the past week, Spain and South Korea stabbed more than 1% of the population every day—approximately 500,000. Germany distributes more than 800,000 support boosters every day, which is enough for 1% of its population. The much larger population of the United States has been slower in launching boosters, but the daily dose exceeds 1 million.
In contrast, in 29 low-income countries around the world (with a total population of 687 million people), only 669,504 doses of any Covid vaccine were received every day in the past week—about one-tenth of the population received one shot.
Health experts say that one of the main obstacles is cost. According to data from the World Health Organization, although most pharmaceutical companies have complied with their commitment to provide tiered pricing and poorer countries pay lower vaccine costs, the price of the Covid-19 vaccine is still higher than any other similar widely used in poorer countries. The price of the vaccine.
The median price of Covid-19 vaccine in low-income countries is $6.88 per servingAccording to data compiled by the World Health Organization in November, the median for high-income countries is $10.45 per dose.
Tania Cernuschi, head of technology for WHO’s global vaccine strategy, said that if compared with another expensive vaccine sold in low-income countries, the price of the human papillomavirus vaccine is US$4.50 per dose. “This will make you feel the price difference.”
“Covid is the highest [priced] Vaccines for low-income environments have been commercialized,” she said. “Compared to other vaccine markets, the price grading of Covid-19 vaccines is very limited. “
In some cases, the country pays for the injection costs itself, while in other cases, the cost is borne by the multilateral access plan.
Richard Kozul-Wright, Director of the Globalization and Development Strategy Division of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), expressed concern that poorer countries are being squeezed by high costs.
“Given that the health budget was stretched before the crisis, this will only greatly increase the burden. [in parts of the developing world],” He said.
According to the analysis of data compiled by UNICEF and Our World Data by the Financial Times, the 59 highest-income countries have been vaccinated with enough vaccines to cover twice their population, and it has accounted for nearly 70% of the total. The population is vaccinated.
Although observers say that supply has improved significantly in the past year and will continue to slow down in 2022, the world will still face Shortage of 3 billion copies According to a report in the Financial Times on Wednesday, if active promotion activities continue to be carried out in rich countries and immunizations are provided for children, it will be early next year.
On the other hand, if countries only increase the population over the age of 50, then from the beginning of 2022, supply will meet demand.
The success of Covax-the vaccine acquisition program established by Gavi, a vaccine alliance aimed at increasing immunization opportunities, the Alliance for Epidemic Prevention Innovation and WHO-has had mixed successes. According to data compiled by UNICEF, deliveries to low-income countries have increased significantly, reaching 29 million doses in November and 99.6 million doses since launch.
Kate O’Brien, WHO’s head of vaccines, said poorer countries, WHO, Covax and other countries are opaque about the order process and vaccines with almost no shelf life. It is regrettable that the batch was delayed-in some cases, as short as three weeks.
The industry refuted criticisms of tight supply, saying the problem was mainly caused by indecision in vaccines in poorer countries. But activists and global health authorities disagree.
“It provides convenient safeguards for pharmaceutical companies that control the market [has] It contributes to artificial scarcity,” health experts including Fatima Hassan wrote in a recent British Medical Journal article.
Activists and health officials say that manufacturers prefer to deliver and Global North, The pharmaceutical company denied this statement.
“Data Display [companies] There was no delivery on time at all, so we were disproportionately affected by the monopoly of intellectual property rights and the supply of drip irrigation in Africa,” Hasan said. “Shameful. “
The available data do indicate that only about half of the doses provided to low-income countries are managed, which suggests that some countries face difficulties in absorbing the supplies they receive.
But WHO’s O’Brien said that when the dose suddenly arrives, countries cannot “suddenly turn on absorptive capacity.”
“It is not enough to just point out the number of doses sent,” she told the Financial Times, noting that syringes are also in short supply, and different vaccines with different cold chain requirements make it very difficult to launch.
“If you really want to provide countries with the ability and convenience to deploy mass vaccination programs as soon as possible, you will not design [it like] That. “