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Coronavirus Vaccines

Vaccine inequity means inoculation rate is still below 10% in over 55 countries

Maya Taylor

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PHOTO: Flickr/USAID in Africa

More than 55 countries have fewer than 10% of their populations vaccinated against Covid-19, the result of vaccine inequity that has yet to be adequately addressed. The Covax programme, created to ensure equity in global vaccine distribution, has been hit by production delays, export bans, and rich countries protecting their own first, according to a Nation Thailand report. Bruce Aylward from the World Health Organisation says wealthier nations that already have enough vaccines must donate more doses and sooner.

“Manufacturers are making a choice not to ship to Covax, and high-income countries are making a choice not to get sufficient doses into these places fast enough. There’s no way to sugar-coat it.”

According to data from the United Nations, around 61% of people in wealthy nations are vaccinated, compared with just 4% in low-income countries. The slow pace of vaccination is a concern for health experts, who say it will prolong the pandemic, thereby increasing the risk of more troublesome variants developing.

According to the Bloomberg Vaccine Tracker, around 71% of the Canadian population is now vaccinated. In the UK, the rate is 67%, and in the US, 56%. Portugal’s vaccination rate of 84% means it has the highest percentage of fully vaccinated people in countries of over 1 million people. Meanwhile, in large parts of sub-Saharan Africa, the vaccination rate is below 1%.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

 

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