As wealthier countries have bought enough coronavirus vaccine doses to immunize their citizens three times over, poorer countries will face being unable to get vaccinated against the virus, an international vaccine watchdog said Wednesday.
Nine out of 10 people in 67 poor countries risk being left behind as rich countries move towards their escape route from the pandemic, the People’s Vaccine Alliance said in a statement.
Canada tops the chart, with enough vaccines to vaccinate each Canadian five times, it said, adding rich nations representing just 14% of the world’s population have bought up 53% of all the most promising vaccines so far.
“No one should be blocked from getting a life-saving vaccine because of the country they live in or the amount of money in their pocket,” said Anna Marriott, health policy manager of Oxfam, which takes part in the People’s Vaccine Alliance.
Marriott warned that billions of people around the world will not receive a safe and effective vaccine for COVID-19 for years unless something changes dramatically.