In an effort to make sure that all countries in need have access to Coronavirus vaccines, the World Health Organization (WHO) was able to secure some 2 billion doses of promising vaccine candidates.
“This is fantastic news and a milestone in global health,” says WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. The 190 countries that take part in the COVAX initiative will have access to vaccines “during the first half of next year.” Partners are “working non-stop to start vaccination early next year.”
The COVAX program doesn’t include vaccines by Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech currently used in Canada, the U.S., Britain, and soon, the European Union, but rather by the pharmaceutical industries AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson, and the Serum Institute of India. According to the U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, it is in the world’s best interest to have a global immunization since “nature always strikes back. If we don’t eradicate the disease, a virus can mutate. And vaccines that at a certain moment are effective can no longer be effective if things change.”