Prioritize immediate access to life-saving COVID-19 vaccines for “billions” of people in the Global South over obscene profits for pandemic profiteering Big Pharma, UN human rights experts tell the leaders of the world’s largest economies ahead of this weekend's G7 summit in the UK.
COVID-19 was a "preventable disaster" that became a pandemic due a lack "global political leadership," according to a recent report issued by a WHO-appointed high-level panel co-chaired by former Liberian President Johnson Sirleaf, a Nobel Peace Laureate and Africa’s first democratically elected female head of state, and Helen Clark, the former prime minister of New Zealand.
COVID-19 vaccine misinformation, disinformation and conspiracy theories, key nurturers of the public health and security crisis of vaccine hesitancy, are still thriving on Facebook, Instagram and other major social media platforms.
COVID-19 is "still evolving" and "progressing around the world," threatening to make the second year of the global pandemic "more deadlier than the first,” WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned this week.
"It is not surprising, therefore, that there is now a vast global coalition of NGOs, states and UN agencies that favour the recognition of vaccines (and health in general) as a public good and not a business, and the consequent temporary suspension of patent rights."
The white supremacy at the heart of recent instances of anti-Asian and anti-Black racism and egregious violence in the United States "does not require a white person to perpetuate it," argues Jennifer Ho, a professor of Asian American Studies at the University of Colorado Boulder.
The "Tuskegee Study of Untreated Syphilis in the Negro Male," a U.S. government-sponsored unethical study on 399 Black men from Alabama that was conducted between 1932 and 1972, is not responsible for current medical racism, health inequities and COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy.
The ongoing global rollout of life-saving vaccines no longer guarantees victory over COVID-19 as new "variants of concern" are now emerging and rapidly spreading worldwide, "putting current pandemic control efforts, including vaccination, at risk of being derailed," a group of leading health experts from around the world argues in this joint op-ed.