News from our campaign as well as recent press appearances from Free the Vaccine for COVID-19 collective members around the world.
  • Become a FTV Project Manager
    In support of the Free the Vaccine for Covid-19 Campaign led by UAEM and the Center for Artistic Activism, we are looking for a few part-time intern Project Managers. Project Managers will support participants in achieving the objectives of the campaign; assist in training participants […]
  • Oh, the Places You’ll Go…With a Free Vaccine
    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Media Contact   Joyce-Zoe Farley, Ph.D. Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM)    +1 201.983.3787 Students and Activists Urge Arizona State University’s President Crow to Sign Open COVID Pledge for a People’s Vaccine WASHINGTON, DC–December 10, 2020 — “…Big Pharma is […]
  • A call for a Peoples Vaccine
    Photo credit: Timoteo Murphy
  • Free the Vaccine lead highlights for NBC how racial disparities create barriers to access for the COVID-19 vaccine
    “Without considering racial equity, we deepen the cracks that systemic racism has already created in our health care system,” said Sernah Essien.
  • The Implications of Pre-Ordering Vaccines
    Wondering how the COVID-19 vaccine is being divided up around the world? Start here.
  • The History of mRNA Vaccines
    Read more about the history and science behind mRNA vaccines here!
  • Designing Vaccines for People, Not Profits
    Critical read on the need for a People’s Vaccine by Mariana Mazzucato, Els Torrele and Henry Lishi Li (available in multiple languages) in Project Syndicate. Designing Vaccines for People, Not Profits
  • To Stockpile or To Share?
    Washington Post reports that the new frontier of vaccine diplomacy can be characterized by two paths: stockpile or share. While entities like the United States and the European Union have been focusing on stockpiling vaccines for their respective populations, other countries, such as […]
  • Register Now: Vaccine Allocation and Social Justice
    Register for a virtual event to learn more about vaccine distribution and equity!
  • Solidarity Live! with Merith Basey
    Merith joins Jocelyn from Act.Tv and Alex from Social Security Works to discuss Free the Vaccine and what the new vaccine announcements really mean for global equity. 🔈 Download Audio only: 50MB MP3 file
  • ANTICOV: A Continental Collaboration
    Image from the Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative Today, the Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative (DNDi) announced in a press release that thirteen countries in Africa, along with an international network of research institutions, are launching the largest clinical trial in Africa for […]
    WASHINGTON, DC — Today, more than 100 high-level leaders from public health, faith-based, racial justice, and labor organizations, joined former members of Congress, economists, and artists to sign a public letter calling on President-elect Biden to make the upcoming COVID-19 vaccine a People’s […]
  • “Vilomah:” An Essay by Kisha Patterson
    Kisha Patterson is a historic preservation architect, artist, and activist practicing in Pittsburgh, PA. She is grateful for the health and safety of her children and urges everyone to demand a People’s Vaccine and sign the Open Covid Pledge. She has been volunteering […]
  • UAEM Press Release: Moderna Should Free All COVID-19 IP
    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE  WASHINGTON, DC–October 9, 2020–Moderna announced yesterday, under pressure from civil society groups including Free The Vaccine for COVID-19 and its allies in their calls for a People’s Vaccine, that it will not enforce patent protections on the pending coronavirus vaccine mRNA-1273. […]
  • The Future: An Uneven Burden of COVID-19
    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 […]
  • Free the Vaccine News Episode 9
    with your host, Tessa Marshall.—week-9.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe in your podcast player via RSS: RSS
  • Merith at the Count the Votes Rally in D.C.
    The day before the election results were declared in the US, Merith Basey on behalf of UAEM and Free the Vaccine, was invited to join allied groups Spaces in Action, Casa in action and others in DC to support the call to “Count […]
  • Atmospheres of the Undead by Caitlin Berrigan
    Free the Vaccine for COVID-19 participant, Caitlin Berrigan, has an essay published in the journal March titled “Atmospheres of the Undead: living with viruses, loneliness, and neoliberalism.” In it she talks about how living with Hepatitis C “reveals the structural inequalities of profit-oriented […]
  • Aly Bancroft: Pharma’s Billions Sprang from the Taxpayer Dime
    Image Credit: Dado Ruvic/Reuters/Washington Post “Megan McArdle was correct that the coronavirus pandemic has revealed the drug development system is working. What she didn’t mention is that the system is working as it was designed: to maximize monopoly profits for the pharmaceutical industry.” Universities Allied for […]
  • Peep this video from partners at the Peoples Vaccine Alliance
  • Meet our Participant: Dannie Synder!
    Check out this interview with one of our Season 1 and 2 participants: Dannie Synder!
  • COVID-19, Generics, and the Medicines Patent Pool
    18 producers of generic medicines signed on to an agreement by the Medicines Patent Pool in order to expedite access to COVID-19 health technologies. Read more here.
  • Today in the News: The Pfizer Vaccine
    Today, Pfizer and BioNTech announced that their vaccine candidate offers 90% protection. Read more on what this news means for vaccine access here.
  • Gates Foundation and COVID-19: What’s Going On?
    The Gates Foundation has often been applauded for their contributions to global research and development. Read an in-depth analysis from Health Policy Watch here.
  • Creative Actions for a People’s Vaccine
    Wondering what the participants in Season 2 of Free the Vaccine for COVID-19 have been up to? Read more here.
  • The Launch & Scale Speedometer
    The Duke Global Health Innovation Effort launched in order to track vaccine manufacturing deals that have been developed by countries all over the world. Read more here.
  • Free the Vaccine News Episode 7
    with your host, Tessa Marshall.—week-7.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe in your podcast player via RSS: RSS
  • A Stop Motion for a Free Vaccine
    Check out the work of our Season 2 Free the Vaccine for COVID-19 participants from Australia in the following video!
  • Transparency and the Vaccine
    Last week, the U.S. government finally released the contract it made with Moderna in August for vaccine manufacturing and distribution. As with most documents of public interest released by this administration, the contract is heavily redacted. Moderna Therapeutics holds one of the current […]
  • Free the Vaccine News Episode 6
    with your host, Tessa Marshall.—week-6.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe in your podcast player via RSS: RSS
  • What the Current COVID-19 Vaccine Trials Cannot Tell Us
    For almost an entire year now, all eyes have been focusing on research to find a safe and effective vaccine for COVID-19. What are these clinical trials really measuring? Peter Doshi of the British Medical Journal (BMJ) reports that the current Phase III […]
  • Photos from the D.C. Funk Rally
    Photos courtesy of Timoteo Murphy!
  • South Africa, COVID-19, and the MMR Vaccine
    According to Global Citizen, researchers from the University of Cape Town (UCT) and the University of the Witwatersrand (WITS) in South Africa have recently launched a trial to test to see if a vaccine given for measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) can serve […]
  • Free the Vaccine News Episode 5
    with your host, Tessa Marshall.—week-5.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe in your podcast player via RSS: RSS
  • 10/21: Join Us for a Funk Rally!
    What do you get when you put lab coats with a message, 70’s fashion, and brightly-colored formal attire in a room with activists pushing for a People’s Vaccine? A Funk Rally! Save The Date: October 21st On October 21st, join us and our […]
  • Meet a Free the Vaccine Participant: Zeph
    One of our participants, Zeph, shared some of their insights on the Free the Vaccine for COVID-19 campaign!
  • Atmospheres of the Undead: living with viruses, loneliness, and neoliberalism
    Free the Vaccine for COVID-19 member, Caitlin Berrigan, published an essay called “Atmospheres of the Undead: living with viruses, loneliness, and neoliberalism” in a new journal called MARCH. Setting a price for the cure of HCV was the golden spike that has since […]
  • Vaccines and Moral Beliefs
    This week within the campaign we’ve been discussing moral frameworks and how people think about vaccines, healthcare, masks, and more in terms of right and wrong. The Center for Artistic Activism led a short lesson on moral frameworks this week, and supplemented it […]
  • Vaccine Nationalism: A Deeper Dive
    Examples of both vaccine nationalism and global collaboration have filled the news these past few weeks. Read more here.
  • Activists demand a ‘Peoples Vaccine’-Moderna Should Free all COVID-19 IP
    WASHINGTON, DC–October 9, 2020–Moderna announced yesterday, under pressure from civil society groups including Free The Vaccine for COVID-19 and its allies in their calls for a People’s Vaccine, that it will not enforce patent protections on the pending coronavirus vaccine mRNA-1273. While such actions […]
  • Free the Vaccine News Episode 4
    with your host, Tessa Marshall.—week-4.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe in your podcast player via RSS: RSS
  • India and South Africa demand Access for Everyone, Everywhere
    India and South Africa are demanding the same thing we are: a vaccine for everyone.
  • Free the Vaccine News Episode 3
    with your host Tessa Marshall. More info at—week-3.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe in your podcast player via RSS: RSS
  • A People’s Vaccine: The Global Call
    Keep reading for important updates from the People’s Vaccine Alliance.
  • This Week in Vaccine News
    A new Phase III vaccine trial and concerns for rushed FDA approval.
  • Attend a COVID-19 Access Webinar!
    Access a webinar hosted by the Alliance for Health Policy, as well as our Free the Vaccine for COVID-19 podcast, here.
  • Op-Ed: I volunteered to be a human guinea pig for a Covid vaccine
    Would you risk your life to test a vaccine? Read our own Thomas Gokey’s Op-Ed in The Guardian here.
  • Free the Vaccine News Episode 2
    with your host Tessa Marshall. More info at—week-2.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe in your podcast player via RSS: RSS
  • Thousands of Lives, Millions of Masks, Billions of Dollars
    Wondering how politics plays into the pandemic? Read more about the United States’ actions (and inactions) for addressing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic here.
  • The Human Rights Defender: Ishtar Lakhani
    Read about the work that Ishtar Lakhani, one of our community leaders participating in the Free the Vaccine for COVID-19 campaign, has been taking on!
  • Season 2 Episode 1: Podcasts, Pledges, and a People’s Vaccine
    Read about what the participants of Free the Vaccine Season 2 learned during the premier episode!
  • We can’t fight covid-19 country by country
    Our South African comrade Dr Zolelwa Sifumba shares why we need global solidarity and a plan to address Covid-19. Read her Op-Ed in the Scientific American here.
  • Who will get the vaccine?
    Priti Krishtel, an Ashoka Fellow and one of our advisors here at Free the Vaccine, talks to Manmeet Mehta of Ashoka on who will get access to the vaccine and other life-saving medicines, how those decisions are made, and what changes – culture […]
  • Free the Vaccine News Episode 1
    with your host Tessa Marshall. More info at—week-1.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe in your podcast player via RSS: RSS
  • Association of Academic Museums and Galleries
    An exhibit of the work created in the Free the Vaccine for COVID-19 campaign is listed on the Association of Academic Museums and Galleries. The Association of Academic Museums and Galleries is the leading educational and professional organization for academic museums, galleries, and […]
  • Vaccine Watch
    Wondering how we’re progressing with regards to a save and effective vaccine? We are too. Here’s the latest.
  • How is Covid-19 impacting vulnerable communities worldwide?
    Dr Jocelyn Kelly, Director of the Program on Gender, Rights and Resilience at the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative, discussed the Coronavirus Pandemic and how it has impacted some of the world’s most vulnerable populations during this Facebook Live Q&A with The World’s Elana Gordon. […]
  • Now’s your chance: Season 2 of Free the Vaccine
    You still have a little time (until end of day on Sept 1st!) to join the amazing crew of hundreds of students, designers, advocates and many others around the world who want to help end this darn pandemic through creativity and community. Submit […]
  • We’re Partnering with Arts Corps!
    Our friends at Arts Corps, under the leadership of James Miles, will be joining the UAEM and C4AA teams as an official partner organization for this next Season 2 of Free the Vaccine!  The onslaught of the COVID-19 virus has shown to disproportionately impacts […]
  • We’re Hiring
    Free the Vaccine for COVID-19 is looking for the right candidate to join us as a Campaign Manager for Season 2 of our campaign! Help us get the word out! If you know someone who would be a good match, please pass the […]
  • Boston Action: Free the Moderna Vaccine
    The Free the Vaccine for COVID-19 Campaign, led by Universities Allied For Essential Medicines and the Center For Artistic Activism, is calling on Moderna Sciences to make the Open Covid Pledge which would commit any relevant intellectual property to be made available globally via open access […]
  • Join Free the Vaccine for COVID-19: Season 2!
    Apply by filling out this form by Sept 6th 11:59pm EDT. Returning collective members, please fill out the above form also! More details on below. First, What is Free the Vaccine for COVID-19? Our campaign aims to ensure that publicly-funded diagnostic tools, treatment, […]
  • Take Action: Tell Us What You Love
    If you read this newsletter, we have two things to say. One, we love you! And two, we want to know what you love. Has a particular Free The Vaccine action inspired you? Do you wake up every Friday excited for the Special […]
  • WATCH: Video from the London Carnival March for a People’s Vaccine!
    The Seal Lab organized this incredible march of 30 demonstrators—the maximum number allowed to gather—in London this past week! From the creative costumes to the brilliant UAEM banner, we’re seeing so much inspiration for future demonstrations. Check out the video and share with […]
  • Meet Izzy and Mahima
    This week, we’d like to introduce you to two more members of our wonderful Free The Vaccine community: Izzy Levine and Mahima Arya, who are both from New Jersey! Izzy and Mahima are members of the Fox Lab, which is comprised of activists […]
  • Free The Vaccine Gets A Shoutout From I-MAK
    Our friends at I-MAK, which seeks to “increase global access to affordable life-saving medicines by restoring integrity to the patent system,” have launched a newsletter. In their first “something hopeful” segment, they’ve kindly chosen to highlight: The excellent #FreeTheVaccine campaign, a global movement […]
  • Phase One Finale: What’s happening in the world of the vaccine?
    Pfizer could make over $15 billion in vaccine sales An analyst has predicted that Pfizer could make over $15 billion from the vaccine at its current price of $19.50 per dose, in addition to the $1.95 billion Pfizer has already received from the […]
  • A Free the Vaccine Exhibit
    Creativity vs. COVID: Ending the Pandemic for Good
  • Meet Elin
    As the first phase of our campaign nears its end, we’d like to introduce you to Elin Chee, a recent graduate of UC Berkeley and a member of our Fox Lab! Meet Elin A data scientist, artist, and activist who hopes to go […]
  • Take Action: Speak Out at the University of California Regents Meeting
    SIGN UP BY JULY 27th to help us take over the UC Regents Meeting and free the vaccine!
  • Op-Ed in the Hartford Courant: Merith Basey, FTV Project Manager and UAEM North America Executive Director, Holds Yale Accountable
    On July 16th, the Hartford Courant published a letter to the editor by Merith Basey, the Executive Director for UAEM North America and one of our leads at the Free The Vaccine campaign, in which she responds to a June 28th op-ed by […]
  • Op-Ed in the Washington Post: World Leaders Call For Equal Global Access to a Vaccine
    On July 15th, world leaders (including Canadian PM Justin Trudeau, Ethiopian President Sahle-Work Zewde, South Korean President Moon Jae-In, New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, Spanish PM Pedro Sánchez Pérez-Castejón, Swedish PM Stefan Lofven, and Tunisian PM Elyes Fakhfakh) […]
  • Week 16: What’s happening in the world of the vaccine?
    The US pays Pfizer $1.95 billion for a vaccine, and Novartis promises COVID-19 related medicines to poor countries “at cost.”
  • How To: Make a Monument Mask
    Remember this stunning action that the Ligers put together? Turns out it’s pretty easy for you to do on your own, and we hope you will! To make the process as simple as possible, the Liger Lab has made this great how-to video […]
  • Highlight from the Dolphin Lab: Peter Singer Supports Free The Vaccine
    Last week, famous Australian bioethicist Peter Singer tweeted his support for Free The Vaccine. It wasn’t a random gesture of support; Dolphin Lab members had reached out asking for him to show his support on social media and for permission to use his […]
  • Week 14: What’s happening in the world of the vaccine?
    Ady Barkan secures a rhetorical commitment from Joe Biden on access to the vaccine, while Gavi’s agreements with donor countries appear to pose problems for access.
  • Take Action: Ask Your Friends to Support the Open COVID Pledge
    We’re currently at 729 signatures. Help us get to a thousand!
  • Carnival March for a People’s Vaccine!
    Join Us in London! Monday 27th 12-3 Universities receive billions in public funding for their research on Covid-19 vaccines, diagnostics, tracking tools and treatments. We’re asking them to sign the Open Covid Pledge, to stop drug companies profiteering with publicly funded research.   […]
  • Take Action: Play Bingo With Us On Instagram Stories!
    This Friday, July 17th, join a social media push led by the Bear Squad.
  • Op-ed in the Vanderbilt Hustler: UAEM students call for Vanderbilt to free the vaccine
    An op-ed by UAEM student Klara Lou, published in the Vanderbilt Hustler on July 15th, discussed the Free The Vaccine campaign in the context of the university’s broader commitments to social justice, and called for the university to join the Open COVID Pledge.
  • Op-ed in Jacobin Magazine calls to nationalize the pharmaceutical industry
    A new article in Jacobin calls for a socialized pharmaceutical industry as a response to the crises of COVID-19 and access to medicines.
  • Highlights from Week 13: Meet Vivian and Kaity
    Meet Vivian and Kaity, two members of the FTV community based in Los Angeles.
  • Op-Ed in Democracy Journal Calls for People’s Vaccine
    An op-ed by Sophia Crabbe-Field, published on July 8th in Democracy Journal, explains the debate over access to COVID-19 vaccines and the need for people’s vaccine: Should the pharmaceutical industry be successful in convincing the world they are indeed the heroes of the […]
  • Take Action: Lip-Sync to Our Cover of “Jolene” and Share Our Viral Video!
    Several weeks ago, our participants decided to make a Free The Vaccine video inspired by “Jolene” after learning that Vanderbilt University had received $10 million from the US government for COVID-19 vaccine research, in addition to $1 million from country singer Dolly Parton. […]
  • Week 13: What’s happening in the world of the vaccine?
    The U.S. Government Pays Biotech Company Novavax $1.6 Billion On July 7th, the U.S. government gave biotech company Novavax $1.6 billion to cover testing, commercialization and manufacturing of a potential coronavirus vaccine. The move was particularly notable because Novavax has never brought a […]
  • Highlights from Week 12 Mission: Engage the Public
    This week, our participants’ mission was to engage the public. That means reworking posters using detailed feedback from Avram Finkelstein, posting on social media to increase individual sign-on to the Open COVID Pledge (note: if you’re reading this and haven’t signed on yet, […]
  • Take Action: Help Us Tweet!
    Got three minutes to help our team? One of our Seal squads, based in Europe, had the idea to create a “Goodnight Stories for Rebel Scientists” book to celebrate COVID-19 researchers and advocate for the Open COVID Pledge at the same time! They’ve […]
  • Op-Ed in STAT News On How HHS Can Make Remdesivir Affordable
    A new op-ed in STAT News by Chris Morten, Christian Urrutia, and James Krellenstein explains how an existing legal tool called government patent use could be used by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to increase competition and drive down the […]
  • Week 12: What’s happening in the world of the vaccine?
    We should all be outraged about the global access issues with Gilead’s drug remdesivir. Meanwhile, support grows for a free vaccine…
  • Op-Ed in WBUR on what we can learn from the AIDS crisis, plus a shoutout to Free The Vaccine
    Don’t miss this fantastic piece by Michael Caron McGuill in WBUR’s Cognoscenti on what we can learn from ACT UP’s history, and why we need a free vaccine. McGuill writes: One campaign fighting for global access and a free vaccine, Free the Vaccine, represents […]
  • Op-Ed in Jacobin on Remdesivir and Public Funding
    A new op-ed by David Sirota in Jacobin Magazine discusses the sky-high price tag on remdesivir and the $70 million Gilead received in public funding to develop it, calling for the use of Section 1498 and Bayh-Dole march-in rights to make medicines including […]
  • Take Action: Sign on individually to the Open COVID Pledge!
    As we work to get institutions to sign onto the Open Covid Pledge, many have expressed the wish that they could add their own names in a gesture of public support, showing their institutions that they care and want to see action for […]
  • Highlights from Week 11: Meet Dannie and Stacy
    Each week, you’ve gotten to see the work our incredible activists are doing to free the vaccine. This week, we’d like to introduce you to two of them: Dannie Snyder of Austin, Texas, and Stacy Early of Memphis, Tennessee! Dannie and Stacy are […]
  • Op-Ed in The Nation Calls for a People’s Vaccine
    A new piece in The Nation by Ady Barkan and Zain Rizvi calls for a vaccine that “belongs to the people,” discussing the dangers of patent monopolies and the need for publicly funded medicines to be fairly priced. They write: Like Salk, Bancel […]
  • EVENT 6/26: Free The Vaccine at Global Change Days
    We will be hosting a session on Free The Vaccine this Friday at 2 pm EST, at the online Global Change Days conference! You can get tickets for the whole conference on the website, and we hope to see you there.
  • Highlights from the Week 10 Mission: Spheres of Influence
    This week, our participants thought about the spheres of influence for our campaign and how they might give people in each sphere the opportunity to get involved with their actions. As part of this mission, they also refined the posters they’ve been working […]
  • Week 10: What’s happening in the world of the vaccine?
    Dexamethasone Trials Yield Positive Results An Oxford trial showed that treatment with the steroid drug dexamethasone cut the risk of death from 40% to 28% for patients on ventilators and from 25% to 20% for patients treated with oxygen. Dexamethasone is the first […]
  • Free The Vaccine on the UnfairNation Podcast
    Merith Basey, one of our leaders here at Free The Vaccine and Executive Director at UAEM North America, recently went on the UnfairNation podcast to talk about why medicines are so expensive and why we need to free the vaccine. Check out the […]
  • Highlights from the Week 9 Mission: Turn Up The Pressure
    This week, our participants continued to work on poster designs and powerful visuals to use in their actions! At the same time, they helped each other turn up the pressure on their targets, brainstorming responses to reluctant targets and sharing approaches that work. […]