The Japanese government on Tuesday approved the spending of 671.4 billion yen ($6.32 billion) from emergency budget reserves to secure coronavirus vaccines, the Ministry of Finance informs.
The government has said it hoped to secure enough vaccines for every citizen by the middle of next year, and provide them for free.
Meanwhile, the World Health Organization on Friday has said that as more potential vaccines emerge to combat the Coronavirus worldwide, it is essential to prioritize Frontline workers for vaccination.
The WHO and GAVI vaccine alliance are leading a global vaccine allocation plan known as COVAX that aims to help buy and distribute shots fairly. The focus is on first vaccinating the most high-risk people in every country such as healthcare workers.
“In time, as production increases, we want all people everywhere to have access to #COVID19 vaccines.
But initially, when supply is limited, priority must be given to vaccinating essential workers & those most at risk, including older people and those with underlying conditions”, WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom said after a meeting with world leaders.
“In other words, the first priority must be to vaccinate some people in all countries, rather than all people in some countries.
“This is not just a moral imperative and a public health imperative, it’s also an economic imperative”, Tedros emphasized.
Speaking further, he opined:
“In our interconnected world, if people in low- and middle-income countries miss out on #COVID19 vaccines, the virus will continue to kill and the economic recovery will be delayed.
Vaccine nationalism will prolong the pandemic, not shorten it”.
Tedros said the COVAX Facility is the agreed international mechanism for ensuring equitable global access to COVID19 vaccines, referring to the plan as “solidarity in action”.
COVAX guarantees access to the world’s largest portfolio of vaccine candidates”-Dr Tedros informed.
“Our partner, the CEPI vaccines, is supporting 9 candidate Covid-19 vaccines that will be made available to the COVAX facility if successful, 7 of which are in clinical trials.