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COVID-19 vaccine: UNICEF hails G7 commitment to sharing 870m doses

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COVID-19 vaccine: UNICEF hails G7 commitment to sharing 870m doses

By Cecilia Ologunagba

The UN on Sunday welcomed the commitment of G7 countries to immediately share 870 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines, supporting global access and helping end the pandemic.

United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Executive Director Henrietta Fore in a statement said equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines represented the clearest path out of the pandemic for all , including children.

She noted that the commitments announced by G7 members were an important step in this direction.

“We have reached a dark stage in this pandemic; there are already more deaths from COVID-19 in 2021 than during all of last year.

“Without urgent action, this devastation will continue,” Fore said.

The senior UNICEF official noted the need for an “acceleration” in both the quantity and the pace of supply.

According to her, when it comes to ending the COVID-19 pandemic, “our best interests and our best natures align and this crisis will not be over until it is over for everyone. “.

In addition, she said the virus has mutated and produced new variants that could potentially threaten the vaccinated and the unvaccinated as the pandemic rages on.

“Dosing now is a smart policy that serves our collective best interests,” said the Executive Director of UNICEF.

Fore said distribution and preparation required clear timelines as to when they would be available, especially in countries with poor health infrastructure.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the lives of children, affecting all aspects of their lives: their health, education, protection and future prosperity.

“Today more than ever, what we do today will have a significant and lasting impact on our collective tomorrow. There is no time to waste, ”she added.

The G7 has committed a billion doses since the virtual summit of early G7 leaders in February 2021, including pledges made at the G20 global health summit.

The G7 countries are a group of the seven largest advanced economies in the world, namely: United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Canada, France, Japan and the United States.

G7 leaders also reaffirmed their support for the UN-led equitable vaccine distribution initiative, COVAX, calling it “the main avenue for delivering vaccines to the poorest countries.”

Likewise, the COVAX alliance welcomed the G7’s commitment, including its continued support for exporting in significant proportions and promoting voluntary licensing and global non-profit production.

Partners are looking forward to “seeing the doses arrive in countries as soon as possible”.

COVAX will work with the G7 and other countries that have stepped up to share doses as quickly and fairly as possible to help resolve short-term supply constraints.

This will help resolve the short-term supply constraints that are currently impacting the global response to COVID-19 and minimize the prospect of future lethal variants. (NAA)

(NAN)

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