Image from Suzanne Kreiter via The Boston Globe
First, last week brought news that Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine had reported 90% efficacy. Then, we heard news from another top contender for the vaccine, Moderna, who reported 94.5% efficacy for their vaccine. Finally, Pfizer announced that their COVID-19 vaccine is 95% effective with no safety concerns. These headlines may suggest promising news for individuals in high-income countries like the United States, but what about the rest of the world?
Mike Ludwig from Truthout reports of a “global vaccine apartheid.” Rich countries can distribute the vaccine (after its approval) amongst their populations after engaging in billion-dollar manufacturing deals with pharmaceutical companies, leaving billions of people around the world unable to access the global vaccine supply. This can lead to “economic devastation for vulnerable communities.”
According to Peter Maybarduk, the director of the Access to Medicines program at Public Citizen, these funders have responsibility to the public. They are not responsible for a pharmaceutical company’s profit margins. This is a People’s Vaccine, and we must continue to fight for it.
Read the full article on Truthout here.