The International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank, World Health Organization (WHO), and World Trade Organization (WTO) have opened a new online portal that will share COVID-19 vaccine data.
The website will host data on access to COVID-19 vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics, and the four international agencies’ activities to combat the pandemic that has gripped the world for the last 18 months.
The website is an initiative of the Task Force on COVID-19 Vaccines, Therapeutics and Diagnostics for Developing Countries and will present an array of data on rates of vaccination and the purchase and deliveries of vaccines, diagnostics, and therapeutics, broken down by country, region, and level of income.
The online portal also has a resources section that directs users to the activities and initiatives of the four international agencies on combating COVID-19.
In a joint statement marking the launch, the four agency heads called on manufacturers to accelerate delivery – and on advanced economies to scale up near-term deliveries to developing countries “reiterating the urgency of providing access to COVID-19 vaccines, tests and treatments to people throughout the developing world.”
According to the WTO, the task force was established to “identify and resolve impediments to vaccine production and deliveries.”
The four agency heads cited the “acute and alarming shortage in the supply of doses to low and low-middle income countries and urged countries to share at least one billion vaccine doses with developing countries during saying that less than 5 per cent of vaccine doses that were pre-purchased for low-income countries have been delivered.
“Our common target is for at least 40 per cent of people in low and low-middle income countries to be vaccinated by the end of 2021. We estimate that less than 20 per cent of the necessary vaccines is currently scheduled for delivery to these countries, whether through COVAX, AVAT, or bilateral deals and dose-sharing agreements.”
According to their estimates, less than 20 per cent of the necessary vaccines are scheduled for delivery to these countries at the moment through COVAX, AVAT, or bilateral deals, with less than 5 per cent of pre-purchased vaccine doses having been delivered.
The global entities also welcomed the recent announcement by COVAX and the World Bank to accelerate vaccine supplies for developing countries through a fresh financing mechanism.
“We also welcome the partnership between the World Bank and AVAT, noting that World Bank financing is now available to support the purchase and deployment of doses secured by both AVAT and COVAX.”
However, they have urged COVID-19 vaccine makers to “redouble their efforts to scale up production of vaccines” specifically for the poor countries.
Further, the heads have called on governments to eliminate barriers to the export of vaccines and materials critical in the production and deployment of the lifesaving shots
Through this website, the Task Force is tracking and monitoring specific global and country-level gaps to support faster and more targeted solutions to accelerate access to COVID-19 vaccines, treatments and tests in developing countries.