WHO head urges to ensure equal access to coronavirus vaccines

WHO head urges to ensure equal access to coronavirus vaccines
# 16 May 2020 06:56 (UTC +04:00)

The world will be able to defeat the novel coronavirus only on the condition of equal access to vaccines and medicines, WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters, calling upon the international community to cooperate in solving this task, APA reports citing TASS.

"Now is the moment where leaders must come together to develop a new global access policy and an operational tool, which will turn the many good intentions expressed in recent weeks into reality," he said.

The official also supported the initiative of presidents of Costa Rica and Chile, who earlier suggested setting up "a health technology repository for vaccines, medicines, diagnostics and any other tool that may work against COVID-19."

According to the WHO chief, "traditional market models will not deliver at the scale needed to cover the entire globe."

"Solidarity within and between countries and the private sector is essential if we are to overcome these difficult times," he added.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the WHO agreed to the proposal of forming the health technology repository and within the next few days it will "launch a platform for open, collaborative sharing of knowledge, data and intellectual property on existing and new health tools to combat COVID-19."

In late December 2019, Chinese officials notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus - named COVID-19 by the WHO - have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.

On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. According to the latest statistics, over 4,543,000 people have been infected worldwide and more than 303,000 deaths have been reported. In addition, so far, over 1,712,000 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.

To date, a total of 262,843 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 58,226 patients having recovered from the virus. Russia’s latest data indicates 2,418 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.