Center for Global Development | Fri, Jul 9, 2021
by Masood Ahmed and Amanda Glassman
Eighteen months into the worst pandemic in a century, we still don’t have a credible, fully financed, time bound battle plan to bring this suffering to an end. Over fifty thousand people are still dying of COVID-19 every week, and new infections are rising dramatically in many developing countries where hospitals are being overwhelmed and supplies of oxygen and other critical medical goods are running short. We say that no one will be safe until the virus is controlled everywhere but our actions don’t reflect that. ACT-A and COVAX—the global mechanism for procuring and delivering vaccines, tests, medicines, and related supplies—remains short of some $17 billion. Half a million deaths could be avoided in the next six months if high income country governments just share enough vaccines to cover high risk populations elsewhere and thereby avert worse-case scenarios.