Chief of WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said that it is critical that the world is better prepared for the next outbreak, calling on countries for greater public health commitment.
“This is not going to be the last pandemic,” Tedros told a Geneva news briefing on coronavirus, which took almost 9 lakh lives worldwide.
“History teaches us that outbreaks and pandemics are a fact of life. But when the next pandemic comes, the world must be ready – more ready than it was this time,” he said.
The president of the WHO previously warned of covetous ‘vaccine nationalism’ calling on countries around the world to cooperate in the fight against coronavirus.
“In our inter-connected world, if people in low and middle-income countries miss out on vaccines, the virus will continue to kill and the economic recovery globally will be delayed. So, using vaccines as a global public good is in the national interest of each and every country. Vaccine nationalism will prolong the pandemic, not shorten it,” he said.
Tedros said that 78 high-income countries now had joined the global vaccine allocation plan “COVAX” and brought the total number to 170 countries, adding that the plan guaranteed them access to the world ‘s largest vaccine portfolio.
The WHO and the GAVI vaccine alliance lead the COVAX facility, which contributes to the fair purchase and distribution of vaccine shots worldwide.
However, some countries , including the United States, which have secured their own supplies through bilateral agreements, said they will not join COVAX.
Gavi is the global vaccine alliance, bringing together public and private sectors with the common purpose of providing equal access for those living in the poorest countries to new and underused vaccines.