Every day that inequalities in countries’ access to COVID-19 vaccines become accentuated and «more grotesque,» said the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, today.
In assessing for the press the situation of the pandemic and the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines on the market, the person responsible added that it is «shocking» for countries with more resources to do «so little» to reverse this situation.
Without naming countries, the WHO chief criticized those who «prefer to vaccinate young people and who are not at any risk category at the cost of other countries being able to vaccinate their health workers and the elderly.»
Israel is the country that has vaccinated the most, with virtually all of its eligible population receiving the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and more than half both doses.
The United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, Chile and the United States are the countries still on the list of those that have immunized the largest proportion of their inhabitants.
«Some countries are in the race to vaccinate their entire populations against COVID-19, while other countries have nothing. This can buy them short-term security, but it’s a false security impression,» he warned them.
It recalled that as long as transmission of the new coronavirus was allowed to continue in different parts of the planet, more variants would appear that could potentially evade the action of vaccines.
However, not all countries have taken the path of hoarding COVID-19 vaccines, if they could.
South Korea, a country with sufficient financial means to have negotiated direct contracts with pharmaceutical companies, chose to be part of the COVAX platform, created by WHO in collaboration with other organizations, for equitable distribution of vaccines and waiting their turn.
Of 450 million vaccines given to date, COVAX has only distributed 30 million because it does not receive sufficient supplies.