The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) will be leading the procurement and supply of COVID-19 Vaccines to ensure that all countries have safe, fast and equitable access to initial doses of Vaccines, when they are available. The procurement and distribution will involve 170 Economies, and has the potential to make it the Largest and Fastest ever kind of operation.
UNICEF will collaborate with Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), to lead efforts for procuring and supplying doses of Covid-19 vaccines on behalf of the COVAX Global Vaccines Facility for 92 low and lower middle-income countries.
i.UNICEF will undertake these efforts in close collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO), Gavi the Vaccine Alliance, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), PAHO, World Bank, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and other partners.
ii.UNICEF is the world’s largest single vaccine buyer. It procures more than 2 billion doses of various vaccines annually for routine immunisation and outbreak response of nearly 100 countries.
i.UNICEF will also serve as procurement coordinator to support purchase by 80 higher-income economies. They have expressed their intent to participate in COVAX facilities and would finance vaccines from their own budget.
ii.COVAX Facility will be open to all countries, and will ensure that no country is left without access to a future COVID-19 vaccine.
COVAX Global Vaccines Facility:
i.COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility (COVAX Facility) was launched in April, 2020 by the World Health Organization (WHO) to speed up development of medicines to treat COVID-19 and make them available to people everywhere.
ii.It is operated by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), and WHO, along with multinational and developing country vaccine manufacturers.
iii.COVAX is the vaccine pillar of ACT-Accelerator (Access to COVID-19 Tools).
Recent Related News:
i.On August 8, 2020, Serum Institute of India(SII) Private Limited entered into a new partnership with Gavi, the International Vaccine Alliance and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to accelerate the process of manufacture and delivery of up to 100 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines for India and other low and middle income countries(LMICs) by 2021, as part of the Gavi COVAX Advance Market Commitment (AMC), a mechanism within the COVAX Facility.
ii.Serum Institute of India(SII) signed a new supply agreement with UNICEF and Vaccine alliance Gavi’s procurement partner to supply Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine(PCV) to low income countries all over the world.
About United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF):
Executive Director – Henrietta H. Fore
Headquarters – New York (United States of America)