UNICEF says poor countries rejected more than 100 million COVID vaccines in December. World

UNICEF says poor countries rejected more than 100 million COVID vaccines in December.  World

In December, the poorest countries rejected more than 100 million doses of vaccines against Covid-19 delivered by the Covax program., mainly because of the expiration date, a UNICEF official revealed this Thursday (13).

UNICEF is the United Nations Children’s Fund, and COVAX is an initiative by WHO (World Health Organisation) and other entities to buy and distribute vaccines against COVID-19 in the poorest countries.

“In December alone, more than 100 million people were rejected,” Atleva Kadilli, director of UNICEF’s supply department, told the European Parliament.

When contacted by news agency Reuters, UNICEF did not say how many doses have been rejected so far.

The denial highlights the difficulties of expanding and accelerating vaccination against COVID-19 in the world, despite a growing supply of vaccines., Kovax has so far distributed approximately 1 billion doses to about 150 countries, but the approximately 700 million doses distributed are yet to be used. (see more below),

According to data from “Our World in Data”, more than 76% of the population of the richest countries have already received at least one dose of vaccines against COVID-19 and more than 70% are fully immunized. In the poorest countries, it is 10% and less than 5%.

“We have countries that are pushing [o recebimento das] The dosage is currently available for the second quarter of 2022”, the UNICEF director pointed out.

Shipments of the Kovax vaccine arrived in Sudan in October 2021 – Photo: AFP

Vaccines not distributed and used

According to data from Gavi (World Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization), Covax has so far distributed 989 million vaccines to 144 countries, in collaboration with WHO and Cepi (Coalition for Promotion of Innovations for Pandemic Preparedness) programmes. manages.

But UNICEF data on vaccines supplied and distributed show that 681 million vaccines shipped have not yet been used in nearly 90 of the poorest countries, according to Care, a charity, which extracted numbers from a public database.

More than 30 countries, including major countries such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Nigeria, have so far used less than half of the dose received.

Covax is the main supplier of supplements to dozens of poor countries, but not the only one. Some purchase vaccines themselves, others use regional vaccination procurement programs, or receive direct donations from other countries.

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