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World Health Organisation (WHO) director-general, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

Technonology Transfers To Boost Production Of Local COVID- 19 Vaccines – WHO

By Fortunate Rekai

FOSTERING of local vaccines will be vital for the eradication of the COVID- 19 pandemic, the World Health Organisation (WHO) director-general, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has said.

According to the remarks made by Dr Tedros recently, the WHO has put in motion technology transfer hubs to support low and middle-income countries in the fight against the pandemic.

In South Africa progress is underway at the WHO MRNA vaccine technology transfer hub which is set to support low and middle countries to produce mRNA vaccines through a centre of excellence and training.

“Fostering local vaccines manufacturing capacity throughout the globe, supplemented by temporary intellectual property waivers for COVID- 19 tools will help bring this pandemic to an end and keep us all safer.

“The commitment from the government and private sectors in South Africa shows that Africans will champion this initiative as the best solution to reclaim people’s lives from the pandemic and emerging variants,” said Dr Tedros.

116 countries are off-target on vaccinating 70% of every countries’ population by the middle of the year 2022; hence, WHO needs support to vaccinate and meet the target.

WHO urges countries to save lives now and seeks some countries to contribute their fair share to fully fund the ACT-Accelerator, especially for the immediate need of US$16billion.

Due to low vaccine coverage and low testing rates, some countries are creating ideal conditions for new variants.

“We can bring the pandemic under control this year, but we are at increased risk of squandering that opportunity,” he said.

WHO, through the ACT-Accelerator, COVAX pillar and UNICEF initiative works to overcome vast global inequities by delivering and supplying more than one billion doses.

The Act-Accelerator program has been introduced to help the need for new funding to scale up their work to develop COVID- 19 countermeasures essential in addressing the threat of the Omicron especially in low and middle countries where they think that the pandemic is over.

The Act-Accelerator program is seeking donors to contribute US$16.8bn of the US$23.4bn total budget, which will be used towards less-developed nations.

“This pandemic can be fought off by many countries working together; this is seen at the Hub and vaccine developers the way they are participating to end the pandemic and keep lives safe.

“By working together, across the public and private sectors, we can bring the pandemic under control and drive an inclusive and sustainable recovery,” added Dr Tedros.

WHO availed a 23-Billion-dollar global fund which is aimed at combatting effects of the COVID- 19 pandemic in the world with special focus on less developed countries; hence, this will help to end the pandemic.

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