Countries like the U.K. will begin distribution of COVID-19 vaccines very soon, although many are voicing concerns over the likelihood of an unfair race between developed and developing countries.
According to a study by the Duke Global Health Institute, more than 80-percent of the vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna have already been secured by developed countries.
This includes the U.K., the first western country to grant COVID-19 vaccine authorization,… and the U.S., awaiting FDA approval in the coming days.
With the huge bulk of available vaccines reserved for high-income nations,… concerns are growing for governments from developing countries over how the vaccines will be distributed.
One official from the Philippines said Wednesday that due to the 80-percent share reserved by developed countries and the 2-percent share secured by the COVAX facility,… developing countries are now scrambling to obtain the remaining 18-percent of the vaccines available.
Another challenge faced by lower-income countries is the cost of vaccination and distribution.
Pfizer and Moderna's vaccines must be stored in costly ultra-cold containers,… with the price of both companies' vaccines above 20 U.S. dollars.
With this in mind, developing countries are turning towards securing vaccines from Oxford University and AstraZeneca.
This is mainly because AstraZeneca's vaccine can be more easily distributed under standard refrigeration and is much cheaper at under four U.S. dollars.
Meanwhile, AstraZeneca has also vowed to provide over 1 billion doses of its vaccine to developing countries.
Choi Min-jung, Arirang News.