The Director-General, World Health Organisation (WHO), Tedros Ghebreyesus, says the economic losses caused by COVID-19 pandemic is estimated at $22 trillion.
While speaking in Geneva, he warned that the COVID-19 pandemic was not over and that over 3.5 million people globally have lost their lives to the disease.
Tedros said new variants have been causing explosive outbreaks, adding that equitable access to vaccines was essential for ending the pandemic.
He said, “Ultimately, the fastest way to bring this pandemic to an end is to dramatically increase global manufacturing of vaccines, tests, treatments and other medical supplies, and ensure equitable access.”
He added, “Our “sprint to September” goal means we must vaccinate at least 250 million more people in low- and middle-income countries, including all health workers and the most at-risk groups as the first priority.
“If countries immediately share doses with COVAX, and if manufacturers prioritize COVAX, we can reach this target and save a lot of lives.”
WHO DG added, “Originator companies that contribute their knowledge to C-TAP can quickly access the production capacity they need to manufacture enough for everyone, while collecting appropriate royalties.
“Contributions to C-TAP are voluntary, transparent and non-exclusive, allowing multiple qualified producers around the world to manufacture COVID-19 health products.”