Tag: Carona vaccine

India’s Supreme Court slams New Delhi’s COVID-19 vaccination policy for 18-44 year olds as “arbitrary and irrational”

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By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 3 June 2021: India’s Apex Court has slammed the Indian government on various aspects of the COVID-19 vaccination policies. A bench comprising Justices DY Chandrachud, L Nageswara Rao, and S Ravindra Bhat in the suo moto case on COVID-related issues (In Re-Distribution of Essential Supplies and Services During Pandemic) observed that the Centre’s vaccination policy, which does not provide free vaccination for those in the age-group of 18 to 44 years, as “arbitrary and irrational”.

Live Law quotes the court as saying, ” Due to the changing nature of the pandemic, we are now faced with a situation where the 18-44 age group also needs to be vaccinated, although priority may be retained between different age groups on a scientific basis. Hence, due to the importance of vaccinating individuals in the 18-44 age group, the policy of the Central Government for conducting free vaccination themselves for groups under the first 2 phases, and replacing it with paid vaccination by the State/UT Governments and private hospitals for the persons between 18-44 is, prima facie, arbitrary and irrational.”.

The court has also sought from the government the comparison between Indian and international prices of COVID vaccines. It also said, private players producing the vaccine in India got government finance and hence it could not be said they alone bore the risk and cost of manufacture. So, it also asked the government to clarify how the sum of Rs 35,000 crore in the central budget for procuring vaccines has been spent so far. It asked why these funds could not be used to free vaccinations in the age group 18-44 years.

The court directed the government to undertake a “fresh review” of its vaccination policies in the light of the court’s concerns and posted the next hearing of the suo moto case on June 30, 2021.

(Watch Video) – US Sets Gold Standards of Selfishness on Vaccine

Newsclick’s Prabir Purkayastha talks about the recent controversy over the US refusing to send essential raw materials for the production of vaccines to India. He analyses India’s miscalculations in its vaccine strategy and also talks about Russian and Chinese vaccines.

Source- Newsclick, 25 April 2021.

WHO-UNICEF concern over “self-defeating strategy” that excludes 2.5 billion missing the corona vaccine

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By Neeraj Nanda

MELBOURNE, 11 February 2021: The WHO and the UNICEF have expressed grave concern over almost 130 countries, with 2.5 billion people being left out of the corona vaccine administered so far. The 128 million vaccine doses have been administered in just ten countries covering 60 percent of the global GDP.

A joint statement by UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore and WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus from New York and Geneva on 10 February 2021 says:

“As of today, almost 130 countries, with 2.5 billion people, are yet to administer a single dose.

“This self-defeating strategy will cost lives and livelihoods, give the virus further opportunity to mutate and evade vaccines, and will undermine a global economic recovery.

“Today, UNICEF and WHO – partners for more than 70 years – call on leaders to look beyond their borders and employ a vaccine strategy that can actually end the pandemic and limit variants.

“Health workers have been on the frontlines of the pandemic in lower- and middle-income settings and should be protected first so they can protect us.

“COVAX participating countries are preparing to receive and use vaccines. Health workers have been trained, cold chain systems primed. What’s missing is the equitable supply of vaccines.

“To ensure that vaccine rollouts begin in all countries in the first 100 days of 2021, it is imperative that:

·Governments that have vaccinated their own health workers and populations at highest risk of severe disease share vaccines through COVAX so other countries can do the same.

·The Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator, and its vaccines pillar COVAX, is fully funded so that financing and technical support is available to lower- and middle-income countries for deploying and administering vaccines. If fully funded, the ACT Accelerator could return up to US$ 166 for every dollar invested.

·Vaccine manufacturers allocate the limited vaccine supply equitably; share safety, efficacy, and manufacturing data as a priority with WHO for regulatory and policy review; step up and maximize production, and transfer technology to other manufacturers who can help scale the global supply.

“We need global leadership to scale up vaccine production and achieve vaccine equity.

“COVID-19 has shown that our fates are inextricably linked. Whether we win or lose, we will do so together.”

Global leaders unite to ensure everyone everywhere can access new vaccines, tests and treatments for COVID-19; US stays away from the initiative

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By SAT News Desk/ WHO Media

GENEVA, 24 April 2020 – Heads of state and global health leaders today made an unprecedented commitment to work together to accelerate the development and production of new vaccines, tests, and treatments for COVID-19 and assure equitable access worldwide. It was a global endorsement of the World Health Organisation (WHO). The United States, China, Russia, and India did not participate in the initiative.

The COVID-19 pandemic has already affected more than 2.4 million people, killing over 160,000. It is taking a huge toll on families, societies, health systems, and economies around the world, and for as long as this virus threatens any country, the entire world is at risk.

There is an urgent need, therefore, while following existing measures to keep people physically distanced and to test and track all contacts of people who test positive, for innovative COVID-19 vaccines, diagnostics, and treatments.

“We will only halt COVID-19 through solidarity,” said Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. “Countries, health partners, manufacturers, and the private sector must act together and ensure that the fruits of science and research can benefit everybody.”

Work has already started. Since January, WHO has been working with researchers from hundreds of institutions to develop and test vaccines, standardize assays, and standardize regulatory approaches on innovative trial designs and define criteria to prioritize vaccine candidates. The Organization has prequalified diagnostics that are being used all over the world, and more are in the pipeline. And it is coordinating a global trial to assess the safety and efficacy of four therapeutics against COVID-19.

The challenge is to speed up and harmonize processes to ensure that once products are deemed safe and effective, they can be brought to the billions of people in the world who need them. Past experience, in the early days of HIV treatment, for example, and in the deployment of vaccines against the H1N1 outbreak in 2009, shows that even when tools are available, they have not been equally available to all.

So today leaders came together at a virtual event, co-hosted by the World Health Organization, the President of France, the President of the European Commission, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The event was joined by the UN Secretary-General, the AU Commission Chairperson, the G20 President, heads of state of France, South Africa, Germany, Vietnam, Costa Rica, Italy, Rwanda, Norway, Spain, Malaysia and the UK (represented by the First Secretary of State).

Health leaders from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), GAVI-the Vaccine Alliance, the Global Fund, UNITAID, the Wellcome Trust, the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement (IFRC), the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers (IFPMA), the Developing Countries Vaccine Manufacturers’ Network (DCVMN), and the International Generic and Biosimilar Medicines Association (IGBA) committed to coming together, guided by a common vision of a planet protected from human suffering and the devastating social and economic consequences of COVID-19, to launch this groundbreaking collaboration. They are joined by two Special Envoys: Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Gavi Board Chair, and Sir Andrew Witty, former CEO of GlaxoSmithKline.

They pledged to work towards equitable global access based on an unprecedented level of partnership. They agreed to create a strong unified voice, to build on past experience and to be accountable to the world, to communities, and to one another.

“Our shared commitment is to ensure all people have access to all the tools to prevent, detect, treat and defeat COVID-19,” said Dr. Tedros. “No country and no organization can do this alone. The Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator brings together the combined power of several organizations to work with speed and scale.”

Health leaders called on the global community and political leaders to support this landmark collaboration and for donors to provide the necessary resources to accelerate the achievement of its objectives, capitalizing on the opportunity provided by a forthcoming pledging initiative that starts on 4 May 2020. This initiative, spearheaded by the European Union, aims to mobilize the significant resources needed to accelerate the work towards protecting the world from COVID-19.