Following its announcement that it’s currently monitoring the new ‘Mu’ variant of the novel COVID-19 diseases, the World Health Organization (WHO) urged countries to postpone for countries to avoid giving out extra COVID jabs until year-end, pointing to the millions worldwide who have yet to receive a single dose.
As PhilStarLife.com, WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, “I will not stay silent when the companies and countries that control the global supply of vaccines think the world’s poor should be satisfied with leftovers.”
Adhanom also encouraged wealthy countries and vaccine makers to prioritize getting the first jabs to health workers and vulnerable populations in poorer nations over boosters. “We do not want to see widespread use of boosters for healthy people who are fully vaccinated,” he said.
To put you up to speed, high-income countries had promised to donate more than one billion vaccine doses to poorer countries, he said — “but less than 15% of those doses have materialized. “We don’t want any more promises,” he said. “We just want the vaccines.”
The UN health agency has set a global target of seeing every country vaccinate at least 10% of its population by the end of this month, and at least 40% by the end of this year.
Unfortunately, despite the call for a moratorium, some nations have been arguing for booster jabs not only for vulnerable people but also for the wider population, citing signs of waning vaccine effectiveness against the highly transmissible Delta variant.
The WHO has acknowledged that an additional dose could be needed for immunocompromised people but stresses that, for healthy people, the vaccines still seem very effective, especially in preventing severe disease.
Given that majority of people in the country has yet to be jabbed, the moratorium does make sense. Let’s just hope that people in authority actually listen to expert advice, and make decisions with the general public in mind.