During a two-day conference this week in Geneva, Gavi’s board decided to phase down Covax after 2023, but to continue giving Covid shots to impoverished countries through more routine programs.
“While Covax continues to have in place plans for worst-case scenarios, the board agreed, in principle, to explore integrating future Covid-19 vaccinations into Gavi’s core programming,” it said in a statement.
A non-profit organization called the Gavi Vaccine Alliance was established in 2000 to supply underdeveloped nations with a variety of vaccines.
Along with the World Health Organization and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, it has assumed leadership of the Covax effort (CEPI).
More than 1.86 billion Covid vaccinations have now been distributed by the worldwide initiative to 146 countries, with the 92 weakest economies receiving the majority of the donor-funded shots.
According to Marie-Ange Saraka-Yao, director of resource mobilization for Gavi, “The support is continuing in 2023.”
“Then of course, depending on how the pandemic evolves, the plan will be to really bring it into the more regular programme,” she said, adding that this was what countries were asking for.
“It doesn’t disappear, but it is really integrated.”
- “Fading” of the acute pandemic phase
In order to combat the “backsliding” in routine immunization since the beginning of the pandemic, this would enable patients to combine getting a Covid shot with getting other vaccines.
According to Saraka-Yao, it might also increase demand for Covid injections.
Few could have predicted that numerous very effective vaccines would become available within nine months of Covax’s release in June 2020. The great majority of prospective vaccinations have historically failed.
Covax was intended to assist address the glaring inequality in access to vaccinations that emerged as wealthier nations raced to accumulate sizable stocks of the many vaccines that were then being developed.
Click here to read our blog on, “Pakistan records progress in the routine immunisation of children”