Direct Covid-19 Vaccines Where They Are Needed Most – fr

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Biden administration open to sharing coronavirus vaccines with North Korea – fr



In the United States, we need to be more proactive in reaching the millions of people we still haven’t reached with the vaccine. Globally, we need to rapidly scale up vaccine manufacturing and immunize the 50 million health workers and 1 billion people over 60 years of age.

Vaccine inequality is a serious problem, both ethically and epidemiologically. Not only does this lead to preventable deaths and economic and social disruption, but it also increases the risk of the emergence of dangerous variants. Rich countries have excess vaccines, while low- and middle-income countries do without.

The reality is that the global vaccine supply will lag behind needs for at least another year. Opening up access to intellectual property is one step, but we need much more: transfer of vaccine technology; use all means to resolve supply chain problems; and the creation of production centers. We can also be more strategic in the use of the available vaccine.

Right now, it is essential that we direct vaccines to where they are needed most. Globally, this means prioritizing – and tracking data on – immunization access and coverage among health workers and people aged 60 and over. There are an estimated 50 million health workers worldwide, of which around 1.7 million are in Africa. Health worker deaths from Covid-19 are preventable, but more than 17,000 have died.

Immunizing all health workers around the world would require less than a week of global vaccine production. Immunizing health workers not only protects them, it also protects the continued ability of health systems to deliver life-saving care. This is especially crucial in Africa, which faces millions more deaths from measles, tuberculosis, malaria and other diseases, unless health care services are maintained. We need to support countries so that they can focus on this task.
It is estimated that more than 80% of Covid-19-related deaths worldwide are in people aged 60 and over. There are an estimated 1 billion people aged 60 and over, and about 300 million of those billions live in countries with an insufficient vaccine and a significant risk of Covid-19 – 74 million of them in Africa. We also need to help countries get this group vaccinated as soon as possible.

Globally, wherever the coronavirus spreads, we must continue to hide and step away. These are the only actions that will make a difference in the short term as we scale up immunization programs, and are essential in the medium term. Vaccination, while readily available, will not crush the curve for months in places where there is currently an explosive spread.

In the United States, we have made great strides in immunization. In summer, we will see cases, hospitalizations and deaths decrease. But we still need to do more to reach the unvaccinated. The “build it and they will come” phase of immunization is complete. About 6 in 10 American adults have been at least partially vaccinated, and more and more people are choosing to be vaccinated every day. But there is a misconception that most unvaccinated people are unwilling to get vaccinated.

Many saw a recent Kaiser Family Foundation investigation as a negative sign. I saw it differently – only a small portion of people are strongly opposed to vaccination, and more people have yet to be vaccinated due to lack of access, rather than reluctance.

Convenient access to vaccines remains the biggest challenge for the US immunization program. According to a new KFF survey released last week, unvaccinated Hispanic adults are twice as likely as white adults to want a Covid-19 vaccine as soon as they can get it. And in a Morning consultation According to the survey, 77% of white adults who want to be vaccinated have gotten one, but that number is only 60% for black adults and 55% for Hispanic adults.

We have to be proactive. We should call and send reminders to patients to get their first and second doses. Vaccination should be widely available in doctor’s offices, churches, schools, convenience stores, supermarkets, bars, pop-ups at community events and more places – which means reaching people where they find themselves. Good idea: The New York Yankees, New York Mets and other teams are now offering the ball game vaccination, as well as free tickets.

Reluctance is also an issue, but convenience tends to overcome reluctance. More and more people understand that vaccination is a path to more freedom, rather than walking away from it. Delays will become less as vaccination becomes the norm.

Vaccination will save lives and prevent explosive spread where vaccine is available. But in most places of the world, the way to save lives right now is to mask, move away, and improve ventilation. Here’s what we need to do in the coming months.

In the short term, we need to rapidly expand supplies of materials and services throughout the global supply chain, saving as many lives as possible by using the existing vaccine supply to prioritize immunization of health workers. and the elderly, and continue to mask and outrun to flatten the curve now where the spread is unchecked.

In the medium term, we need to transfer vaccine technology to regional manufacturing centers so that effective vaccines, especially mRNA vaccines, can be rapidly scaled up, especially for low- and middle-income countries. Transferring mRNA technology and increasing production globally is critical and the most important step we can take to help end the pandemic. Failure to share this technology puts us all at ongoing risk.

In the long term, we need to position mRNA as a platform to combat variants of the coronavirus and other emerging threats, strike a balance between proper respect for intellectual property and the public good of pandemic prevention. and public funding allocated to the production of these vaccines, and increase the number of vaccine producers. And we have to strengthen preparation more generally.

The pandemic is far from over. There is light at the end of the tunnel, but we cannot be blinded by it. If we work together effectively across borders, we can end this emergency and become more resilient in the face of future health threats. We are all really connected. We have to act this way. An epidemic anywhere is a threat everywhere.



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