President Joe Biden is all set to announce plans on Wednesday to donate 500 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to the world as part of a plan to get 70 percent of the world population vaccinated by this time next year.
The United States has managed to administer something like 160 million doses of the vaccine to impoverished countries that have vaccine rates well below the standard of many other wealthier countries, with another 400 million now on the way.
This puts America’s contribution at over 1 billion doses, which is still much less than the 11 billion the World Health Organization estimates will be needed to reach 70% of the world’s population.
Low vaccination rates in impoverished countries worry global leaders, with many at the Tuesday opening of the United Nations General Assembly urging wealthy countries to increase their donations of vaccine doses. The U.N. also wants 70% of each country’s population vaccinated before the U.N. meeting next September.
“A majority of the wealthier world is vaccinated. Over 90% of Africans are still waiting for their first dose,” U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres went on to say. “This is a moral indictment of the state of our world.”
I don’t know about anyone else, but it’s a bit worrisome that Biden wants so badly to see this much of the world vaccinated. Is it really about making sure the illness is put under control, or is something else going on?
This pandemic is making the companies who produced the vaccine very, very wealthy.