Biden administration announces plans to share 55 million doses of Covid-19 abroad – .

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Biden administration announces plans to share 55 million doses of Covid-19 abroad – .



For the 80 million doses that the administration has pledged to share, the White House said 75% will be shared through the global vaccination program called Covid-19 Vaccines Global Access, or COVAX, and 25% will be shared directly. with countries in need. Earlier this month, the administration announced its plan to distribute the first 25 million doses.

“Our goals are to increase global COVID-19 vaccine coverage, prepare for outbreaks and prioritize healthcare workers and other vulnerable populations based on public health data and recognized best practices. , and help our neighbors and other countries in need, ”the White House said in a statement. “And, as we have said before, the United States will not use its vaccines to curry favor with other countries. “

About 41 million of this second installment of 55 million doses will be shared via COVAX, according to the White House.

Of these doses of COVAX, around 14 million will be distributed in Latin America and the Caribbean – especially Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Paraguay, Bolivia, Uruguay, Guatemala, El El Salvador, Honduras, Haiti and other Caribbean communities (CARICOM), the Dominican Republic, Panama and Costa Rica.

Approximately 16 million of COVAX allocations will be distributed in Asia and sent to India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, Maldives, Bhutan, Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Laos, Papua New Guinea, Taiwan, Cambodia and Pacific Islands.
About 10 million doses of COVAX will go to African countries which will be selected in coordination with the African Union.

About 14 million, or 25% of the 55 million vaccines, will be sent directly to Colombia, Argentina, Haiti, other CARICOM countries, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Panama, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, Africa South, Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Cabo Verde, Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, Yemen, Tunisia, Oman, West Bank and Gaza, Ukraine, Kosovo, Georgia, Moldova and Bosnia.

The White House did not provide exact figures on the number of doses that would be sent to each country, only estimates for regions in general.

The doses will consist of Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccines. AstraZeneca’s vaccine has not been approved by federal regulators.

The White House is no longer committed to distributing the 80 million doses by the end of June, which was its previously stated goal. Instead, a White House official said, “The shipments will leave as soon as the countries are ready to receive the doses and we will work on the complex logistics with them. ”

The White House cites logistical challenges as the reason for the delay in shipping vaccines, although CNN has reported other issues, including officials having to develop a contingency plan given the doses they originally planned to have. use – made by AstraZeneca – had not yet been authorized. a US Food and Drug Administration Safety and Effectiveness Review.

“What we found to be the biggest challenge isn’t actually procurement. We have a lot of doses to share with the world. But it’s a Herculean logistical challenge, and we’ve seen it as we started to implement, ”White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters on Monday.

Among those challenges, Psaki said, is sharing safety and regulatory information, ensuring teams have the necessary supplies and transportation to receive the doses, ensuring proper storage and preparation, and ensuring that teams have the necessary supplies and transportation to receive the doses. ‘ensuring that vaccines go through customs. Language barriers have also been a problem, Psaki said.

“Just as we did in our national response, we will act as quickly as possible, while respecting regulatory and legal requirements of the United States and the host country, to facilitate the safe and secure transport of vaccines across borders. international, ”the White House said in a statement. declaration. “It will take time, but the president has ordered the administration to use all levers of the US government to protect individuals from this virus as quickly as possible. ”

As part of Biden’s efforts to reaffirm U.S. leadership on the world stage, the president announced earlier this month that the United States plans to donate 500 million doses of the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine globally. . The move will also serve to counter efforts by Russia and China to use their own publicly funded vaccines to expand their global influence.

In February, Biden said the US $ 2 billion contribution would go to a global coronavirus vaccine initiative and provide support to COVAX. Biden also pledged an additional $ 2 billion in funding subject to contributions from other countries and dose delivery targets met.

CNN’s Kaitlan Collins and Betsy Klein contributed to this report.

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