WHO calls for $ 23 billion to support next phase of ACT accelerator
Ahead of the G20 leaders’ meeting in Rome this weekend, the World Health Organization (WHO) today unveiled the new plan for the ACT accelerator and called on leaders in developed countries to fund it fully to bring the COVID-19 pandemic under control.
In other developments, UNICEF has called for urgent action to address an expected syringe shortage, and African health leaders have said only five countries in the region will meet the target of immunizing 40% of the population. their population by the end of the year.
Fully funded plan to end the pandemic
TO press conferenceWHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, PhD, said the ACT accelerator has worked to provide more equitable access to COVID-19 vaccine, treatment and diagnostics. “But the ACT accelerator has so far been prevented from realizing its potential due to severe supply and funding constraints,” he added.
Tedros pointed out that COVID-19 cases increase again after 2 months and that the pandemic persists largely due to inequitable access, with 80 times more tests and 30 times more vaccines distributed in income countries higher than in low-income countries. Oxygen and protective gear are still scarce in some countries, and the lack of testing leaves some countries unaware of the virus’s circulation and the emergence of new variants.
He called on the leaders of the G20 countries to make political and financial commitments to end the pandemic and prevent future threats. “We are at a crossroads, requiring decisive leadership to make the world a safer place.”
In addition to fully funding the $ 23.4 billion ACT Accelerator award for next year, he called on the group to support a legally binding treaty on pandemic preparedness and response and to support a Council of financing of health threats that would be supported by a Board of Financial Intermediaries and hosted by the World Bank.
Needles shortage looming
In a related development, UNICEF today warned that reaching new immunization targets – assuming an unlimited supply of vaccines – could lead to a shortage of 2.2 billion AD syringes. This type of syringe automatically locks to prevent reuse, and WHO and UNICEF guidelines require it.
UNICEF has said auto-disable syringes are essential for safety and low and middle-income countries will bear the brunt of the shortage. The group has already secured 3 billion syringes since 2020, including a stock financed by GAVI to prepare for the deployment of the COVID-19 vaccine. He added that so far the offer has been sufficient.
The expected shortfall is linked to higher demand, disruptions in freight and supply chains and an unpredictable vaccine supply, UNICEF said. He called for six urgent steps, including expanded access to standard 0.5ml self-locking syringes as well as 0.3ml syringes for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.
Some African countries, including Kenya, Rwanda and South Africa, have already experienced delays in receiving syringes, said Matshidiso Moeti, MBBS, who heads the WHO African regional office, today. of a press conference. Report.
“The looming threat of a vaccine commodity crisis hangs over the continent. Early next year, COVID-19 vaccines will start pouring into Africa, but a syringe shortage could cripple progress.”
Vaccination targets not met in Africa
In an update on the progress of immunization in the region, Moeti said Africa has now vaccinated 6% of its population and faces a deficit of 275 million doses to meet the goal of vaccinating 40% of the population by the end of the year.
So far, only five countries have reached or will meet the target: Seychelles, Mauritius, Morocco, Tunisia and Cabo Verde.
Moeti said some countries still need to improve their preparation for launching vaccination campaigns and WHO is carrying out emergency support missions in five countries to speed up and improve their deployments. Plans are underway for similar missions in 10 other countries by the end of the year.
More Global Headlines
- Yesterday, the partnership for maternal, newborn and child health announcement $ 32.1 billion to help boost health services disrupted by COVID-19, such as family planning and nutrition. Almost 60% of funding came from low- and middle-income countries, with the remainder coming from high-income countries and a private foundation. About half of the money will go to COVID-19, with the rest targeting other health services.
- In the course of epidemics, daily cases in Russia exceeded 40,000 for the first time with plans underway for to restart its vaccination campaign to stimulate low use, the capital of Ukraine Kiev tightens restrictions as cases rise again in the country, and Singapore is monitoring what he says is an unusual peak in COVID-19.
- The global total rose to 245,366,553 today, with 4,977,525 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins online dashboard.