CEPI, Gavi and the WHO have launched COVAX to ensure equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines and end the acute phase of the pandemic by the end of 2021.
COVAX – part of the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator – aims to provide an ‘end-to-end’ solution to the challenge of vaccine development, manufacture and supply in the COVID-19 pandemic, bringing together the skills, expertise and resources of the public, private and philanthropic sectors on a global scale.
Making vaccines available to those who need them in a fast, effective and equitable way is how we will bring the COVID-19 pandemic to an end. But initial demand for COVID-19 vaccines is going to vastly outstrip supply. By working together and by investing upfront in manufacturing capacity, COVAX unlocks the power of the multinational corporations to work towards one collective goal. Changing this from a race against each other to produce and procure vaccines to a race against the virus.
For every month that this pandemic continues, we all experience the devastation that it causes through the loss of tens of thousands of lives and the strain it puts on our healthcare systems. We also see the economic effects of trying to stop the spread through large-scale lockdown and travel bans. Recent estimates suggest that $375 billion is lost from the global economy each month. Acting now to accelerate development, manufacture, and equitable distribution of a COVID-19 vaccine will save millions of lives and protect the livelihoods of billions more.
CEPI, alongside Gavi and the World Health Organisation, launched COVAX with the aim of ending the acute phase of the pandemic by the end of 2021. COVAX is the only solution that will deliver fair, equitable access to vaccines for every country that participates. Combining the expertise and experience of CEPI, Gavi, WHO and industry, we aim to produce 2 billion doses of vaccine and distribute them according to an equitable allocation formula in 2021.
COVAX works by pooling financial resources to purchase vaccines at scale, sharing the risks associated with developing vaccines and investing up-front in manufacturing so that vaccines are ready to be distributed as soon as they are licensed.
Through COVAX, participating countries will have access to CEPI’s portfolio of COVID-19 vaccine candidates – the largest in the world – managed by CEPI’s R&D experts. This portfolio approach increases our chances of developing multiple successful vaccines, which is crucial if we are to meet demand and protect the most vulnerable.
Countries of all income levels can participate in the COVAX Facility, a financing mechanism established by the COVAX partners. All participating countries – of every income level – will get doses for at least 20% of their population. That covers those most at risk – health workers, elderly people, and adults living with health conditions. In the age of COVID-19, nobody is safe until everybody is safe.