Biden met virtually with the U.N. General Assembly to discuss the foundation of the global vaccination summit. He encouraged the well-off countries to do more to control the coronavirus.
Global leaders, aid groups, and global health organisations are becoming more vocal about the slow pace in global vaccinations and inequity in access to shots for residents of poorer and wealther countries.
With the purchase by the U.S. of 500 million more shots, it brings the total U.S. vaccine commitment to over 1.1 billion doses by 2022. The U.S. has already distributed 160 million vaccines to over 100 countries. This is more than all of the donations in the world. Over the next year, the remaining American doses of the drug will be distributed.
Biden stated that "To defeat the pandemic here we must beat it everywhere." Biden stated that for every shot administered in America to date, he has now made three commitments to help the rest of the world.
This latest purchase represents only a fraction the amount that will be required to reach the goal of immunizing 70% of the world's population and 70% of citizens in each country by the September U.N. Meeting. This goal was pushed forward by global aid organizations, which Biden supported.
Biden is urging other countries to take more steps in their vaccine sharing programs.
Biden stated that other countries with high incomes are needed to fulfill their ambitious vaccine pledges and donations. Biden urged wealthy countries to donate the vaccines to less-developed nations and not sell them to them, and that they provide them without any political strings.
Biden stated that the U.S. would increase funding for global aid organizations that administer shots
American responses have been criticised for being too modest. This is especially true when the administration proposes booster shots for tens of million of Americans before people in need in poorer countries receive even one dose.
"We have seen failures of multilateralism in responding in an equitable, coordinated manner to the most critical moments. At the United Nations, Ivan Duque, the Colombian President, stated Tuesday that the existing gaps between countries in the vaccination process were not to be expected.
Globally, more than 5.9 billion doses of COVID-19 have been administered in the last year. This represents 43% of the world's population. There are huge disparities in distribution. Many lower-income countries struggle to vaccinate the most vulnerable members of their population. Some have yet to reach 2% to 3.3% vaccination rates.
Sebastian Pinera, the Chilean President, stated that the "triumph," of rapid vaccine development was countered by political failures that resulted in uneven distribution. In science, cooperation won; in politics, individualism prevailed. Science was dominated by shared information; politics had reserve. Pinera stated that science was dominated by teamwork, while politics is dominated by isolated effort.
According to the World Health Organization, only 15% of pledged vaccine donations from rich countries have been fulfilled. This is despite having access to large amounts of vaccines. According to the U.N., it is important that countries fulfill their dose-sharing commitments immediately and make vaccines available for programs that help Africa and poor countries.
COVAX, a U.N.-backed program that ships vaccines to all nations, has had problems with supply shortages, production issues and a near-cornering market for vaccines from wealthy countries.
The WHO has asked vaccine companies to prioritise COVAX and publish their supply schedules. The WHO also appealed to wealthy nations to stop large-scale rollouts for booster shots in order to make vaccines available to vulnerable populations and health care workers in the developing world. These calls were largely ignored.