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Opinion and Editorial

KT edit: WHO needs support

Filed on September 3, 2020

The need for global solidarity in the fight against the pandemic cannot be stressed enough, and yet the World Health Organization is struggling to get high-income countries, including the US, onboard for its global Covid-19 vaccine procurement facility, Covax. The scheme, which aims to speed up vaccine development and ensure equitable global distribution of two billion doses of vaccines to high-risk populations, has been unable to secure enough funding so far. The Trump administration has said it would not be a part of the initiative because the WHO is involved in it. 

Funding initiatives such as Covax for the sake of the poor is hardly an act of charity. What's clear so far is that one part of our world cannot possibly emerge from this crisis until everyone on the planet is inoculated against the virus. Half of the world's population is poor, often without access to clean drinking water and sanitised environs. They are the most vulnerable ones to Covid-19 infection. Our world leaders need to look beyond vaccine nationalism and lend a helping hand to the poor. We need to get our facts and ethics straight on this issue. Rich countries need to be more generous at this time not less. The world is walking on a Covid tightrope, and the poor need all the help they can get to fight this pandemic. The WHO has taken a lead; it should be supported. 


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