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WHO urges halt to booster shots for rest of the year – Las Vegas, Nevada

Las Vegas, Nevada 2021-09-08 23:07:26 –

Geneva (AP) — Rich countries with high supply of coronavirus vaccine should refrain from providing booster shots until the end of the year and make their doses available to poor countries, the World Health Organization head said Wednesday For the almost neglected booster “Moratorium”, which doubled the previous complaint.

WHO Executive Director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus also commented from the top association of pharmaceutical companies on Tuesday that the vaccine supply is high enough to enable both booster shots of people in high-supply countries and the first jab in poor countries. After hearing, he said, “I was stunned.” It faces a shortage. He said that was already the case.

“I’m not silent when the companies and countries that control the global supply of vaccines think that the poor people in the world should be satisfied with the leftovers,” he said at a news conference. “Manufacturers are obliged to prioritize or legally implement bilateral transactions with developed countries that are willing to pay the highest amount, so low-income countries have tools to protect their people. I’ve been robbed. “

Tedros had previously requested a booster moratorium until the end of September. However, wealthy countries such as the United Kingdom, Denmark, France, Greece, Germany and Spain plan to offer a third dose of the double-dose vaccine to vulnerable people such as the elderly and those with weakened immunity. Is starting or considering.

Israel has offered a third dose to a wide range of people who had already received a full double dose regimen a few months ago. And last month, U.S. health officials recommended that all Americans get boosters to strengthen their protection, in evidence that vaccines are becoming less effective. WHO officials claim that the scientific legitimacy of the booster remains unclear.

Tedros acknowledged that at-risk groups may require a third dose, but “does not want boosters to be widely used in fully vaccinated healthy people.” Said.

White House spokesman Jen Psaki said the United States had donated and shared about 140 million doses to more than 90 countries in response to the WHO’s call for booster shots.

She added: “From Senegal to South Africa to India, we have made significant investments to promote the global production of COVID vaccines. At the same time, the President and this administration have helped us to protect the people of the United States. I am responsible for doing everything I can. “

U.S. health authorities continue to evaluate the science and usefulness of boosters, Growing indications The United States may miss the Biden administration’s September 20 target date for the widespread deployment of additional shots for vaccinated people.

At a meeting of influential groups in 20 countries this week, WHO chiefs said from the Minister of Health on efforts to achieve WHO’s goal of immunizing at least 40% of people each year in all countries. He said he received the message “Clear support”. the end.

“A month ago, I called for a global moratorium of booster doses to prioritize vaccination of the world’s highest-risk people who have not yet received the first dose, at least until the end of September.” Said Tedros. “Since then, there has been little change in the world situation.”

“So today I am calling for an extension of the moratorium until at least the end of the year to allow all countries to vaccinate at least 40% of their population,” he said.

According to the WHO, 5.5 billion coronavirus vaccines have been administered so far, 80% of which are for high- and middle-income countries. Developed countries have also offered to donate 1 billion doses to other countries, but less than 15% of those doses have “embodied”, Tedros said.

He said manufacturers have promised to prioritize UN-sponsored COVAX programs aimed at delivering vaccines to the poorest people in the world, no matter how wealthy the country is.

“I don’t want any more promises, I just want a vaccine,” said the WHO chief.

At the beginning of Wednesday, COVAX managers predict that the target shipments will be reduced again this year, with approximately 1.4 billion doses available throughout the program by the end of the year. This is a decrease from the previous approximately 1.8 billion times. They initially wanted 2 billion shipments this year.

Gavi of the Vaccine Alliance, which co-operates the program, said that COVAX is a major producer of vaccines, with export restrictions from the devastated India, regulatory hurdles for some vaccine candidates and elsewhere. He said he was facing a setback such as manufacturing problems. However, deliveries have increased significantly, with an additional 1.1 billion doses expected to be available by the end of the year through the program, up from the previous 330 million doses. Most of those doses have gone to or are destined for poorer countries.

The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers’ Associations said on Tuesday that about 1.5 billion COVID-19 vaccines were produced each month, citing a total of 12 billion production by the end of the year.

Dr. Bruce Aylward, Tedros’s top adviser, admitted that “some countries may be making decisions” to broadly manage boosters, but WHO called the moratorium “make a real difference.” “. He said several countries he did not identify approached WHO as to whether booster policy could be delayed.

But, indeed, WHO’s first moratorium call by September has not corrected the gaping imbalances in access to vaccines.

“Our role is to raise the strongest possible debate and get out of this pandemic, and the way out of it is the moratorium and to expand it,” said Aylward. “Since the last request, the amount of vaccines available to low-income countries has decreased due to the widening gap in equity.”

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