In yet another recent study, the disparity in the availability of Covid-19 vaccines between low and high income countries was highlighted. The gap is glaring, as vaccines are now stocked by high-income countries even as low-income countries desperately search for supplies.
Globally, 8.6 billion doses of vaccines have been purchased so far and much of it (4.6 billion doses or 53%) has been secured by high-income countries, a geopolitical bloc that does not represent than 16% of the world’s population. Meanwhile, the share of low-income countries is only 770 million doses, according to a study “Reducing Global COVID Vaccine Shortages: New Research and Recommendations for US Leadership.”
The central point of the study is to highlight how the United States is a good example of how these high-income countries stock up on drugs at the cost of living in developing countries and poor countries.
According to the study, the United States is expected to have 300 million additional doses of vaccine by July. It had already increased its orders in February by increasing the number of vaccine doses ordered previously by 200 million doses. Today, 300 million doses of Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna will be stored there.
In March, the Biden administration increased an order for 100 million doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine to 200 million doses. The vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna are given in two doses, while that from Johnson & Johnson is a single dose vaccine.
In addition, it already has a stock of 20 million doses of the University of Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, which has yet to be approved in the United States. Last year, the United States placed an order for 300 million doses of the vaccine. Then there are another 100 million doses ordered for the Novavax vaccine, which will be produced in India by the Serum Institute of India (SII), and which is currently undergoing phase 3 trials.
So in theory 1,200 doses of vaccine ordered for a target population of 257 million people in the United States when it can actually immunize 600 million people.
On the ground, the country is currently administering two vaccines as it has suspended use of the J&J vaccine due to reports of a rare side effect of a blood clot without approval for the AstraZeneca vaccine, while Novavax is in phase 3 trials. .
However, even the 600 million doses of Pfize-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines are more than enough for the adult population in the United States, especially when they have not reported any major side effects.
A look at the calculations
According to the US Census Bureau, the current population of the United States is 330 million. Of this total, approximately 73 million are under the age of 18. Thus, the target adult population that is vaccinated is 257 million.
US President Joe Biden recently ordered all states to open it to anyone over the age of 18 starting April 19. In the country, almost all states have opened vaccination for the population over 16, but they require parental consent. .
Now, according to the “Our World in Data” database website, the United States has so far administered 209.41 million doses of the vaccine.
In terms of vaccines, according to the USA Today database, up to April 18, 109,122,092 doses of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, 92,181,455 doses of Moderna vaccine, and 7,935,549 doses of J&J vaccine have been administered.
This means that more than 108 million people, or 42% of the population, have already received COVID vaccines in the country with at least single doses of the vaccine.
About 62 million people, or 24% of the target population, have been fully vaccinated, according to the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Database.
According to this calculation, the United States needs about 400 doses of vaccine, at most, including vaccine wastage, to cover the entire target population. This means the country has ordered around 200 million additional doses of the two double-dose vaccines it is currently using.
It is also responsible for diverting vaccines, including the stockpile of 20 million AstraZeneca vaccines that it has not yet approved but which is in use in more than 70 countries, including India.
India, the world’s largest vaccine producer, is also exporting it to other countries in desperate need of vaccines, even as it is witnessing the second outbreak of COVID with an exponential increase in daily cases which is now the most raised to the world.
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