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Biden administration buys 500 million Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine doses for global use

The Biden administration is buying 500 million doses of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine to donate to the global provide, the White House stated Thursday. That will present sufficient pictures to completely vaccinate 250 million folks.

The U.S. is donating 200 million doses this year and 300 million doses within the first half of 2022, the White House stated. All of the doses shall be distributed by COVAX — the global entity that’s working to make sure equitable entry to COVID testing and vaccines — and shall be given to 92 low- and middle-income nations and the African Union.

President Biden will announce the acquisition Thursday in his remarks earlier than the Group of Seven summit in Britain. The White House says the vaccines will start delivery in August. 

Global well being leaders have been stepping up their criticism in current weeks of nations which have elected to use their vaccine provide to offer pictures to youngsters and different residents at low threat of extreme illness inside their borders, warning that doing so would come “at the expense of health workers and high-risk groups in other countries.”

In an open letter to G7 leaders forward of the summit, UNICEF warned that COVAX was already going through a direct shortfall of 190 million doses and urged nations to make “urgent donations by August and to set out a roadmap to scale up donations as supplies increase.” COVAX had originally aimed to ship 2 billion doses of vaccine by 2021.

Purchasing 500 million doses of the vaccine can be the best contribution but by the U.S. to ending the pandemic worldwide. The White House had already dedicated to sending 80 million doses to different nations.

Other nations have been urging the U.S. to offer them extra vaccine, since America has the biggest vaccine provide of any nation, in addition to a few of the simplest vaccines.

Some smaller nations have already begun donating tranches of vaccine to COVAX, although none have pledged as a lot because the U.S. In April, France grew to become the first of the G7 nations to share doses from its home provide with COVAX.

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Some well being consultants and advocates welcomed the information of the deliberate donations by the U.S. The ONE Campaign, which was led by former USAID Administrator Gayle Smith earlier than she was tapped by the White House to steer its global COVID-19 response, issued an announcement urging other G7 leaders to “follow the U.S.’ example and donate more doses to COVAX.”

The announcement will come as Mr. Biden makes an attempt to reassert U.S. affect on the planet and amongst allies. The president is especially eager to emphasise the significance of democracy as he attends summits within the U.Ok. and Belgium. 

The White House additionally argues the vaccines will assist make use of Americans right here at residence. Pfizer plans to provide the doses at their amenities in Kalamazoo, Michigan, McPherson, Kansas, Chesterfield, Missouri, and Andover, Massachusetts, which make use of roughly 7,500 folks.