- ·The Global Vaccine Summit, hosted by the UK, raises US$ 8.8 billion from 32 donor governments and 12 foundations, corporations and organisations to immunise 300 million children and support the global fight against COVID-19
- ·US$ 567 million also raised for new innovative financing instrument to provide access to COVID-19 vaccines for low- and middle-income countries
- ·Boris Johnson: “Together we rise to fulfil the greatest shared endeavour of our lifetime – the triumph of humanity over disease, now and for the generations that follow.”
World leaders have pledged US$ 8.8 billion for Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, far exceeding the target of US$ 7.4 billion.
The funding will help immunise 300 million more children in the world’s poorest countries against diseases like measles, polio and diphtheria by the end of 2025. It will also support health systems to withstand the impact of coronavirus and maintain the infrastructure necessary to roll out a future COVID-19 vaccine on a global scale.
The pledges were made at the Global Vaccine Summit 2020, hosted by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Representatives from 52 countries, including 35 Heads of State, joined leaders from global health organisations, the private sector, vaccine manufacturers and civil society organisations to support the Vaccine Alliance’s work protecting almost half the world’s children against deadly, preventable infectious diseases.
Gavi, the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF have warned that 80 million children under the age of one are at risk of disease due to disruptions to vital immunisation programmes because of COVID-19.
The UK remains the Vaccine Alliance’s largest donor, pledging the equivalent of £330 million per year over the next five years. Other top donors include the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Norway, Germany and the United States. Eight countries made their first ever pledge to Gavi, including Bhutan, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Finland, Greece, New Zealand, Portugal and Uganda.
As well as supporting the routine vaccination of hundreds of millions of children in lower-income countries from infectious diseases, the new support will also be used to help lower-income countries meet the challenge of the coronavirus pandemic by strengthening health systems and vaccine distribution.
“Britain has been honoured to host this summit today,” said Boris Johnson, UK Prime Minister. “You can count on our full contribution as together we rise to fulfil the greatest shared endeavour of our lifetime – the triumph of humanity over disease, now and for the generations that follow. As we make the choice today to unite and forge a path of global co-operation, let us also renew our collective resolve to find the vaccine that can defeat coronavirus.”
“To beat the COVID-19 pandemic, the world needs more than breakthrough science. It needs breakthrough generosity. And that’s what we’re seeing today as leaders across the public and private sectors are stepping up to support Gavi – especially Prime Minister Johnson,” said Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. “When COVID-19 vaccines are ready, this funding and global coordination will ensure that people all over the world will be able to access them.”
Over the next five years, we will also see the largest investment in immunisation ever made by lower-income countries.
Gavi-supported countries will contribute US$ 3.6 billion towards the cost of buying vaccines – more than double the amount for the 2016-2020 period and more than 40% of the total estimated cost of supplying vaccines to these countries. They are also expected to invest around US$ 6 billion in immunisation service delivery costs over the same period. The dire economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic may, however, disrupt these estimates.
Gavi’s market-shaping efforts to make life-saving vaccines more affordable have seen a 21% price reduction for fully immunising a child with pentavalent, pneumococcal and rotavirus vaccines – from $20.01 in 2015 to $15.90 in 2018.
“COVID-19 is a brutal reminder of why we must prioritise health,” said Roch Marc Christian Kaboré, President of Burkina Faso. “But if we fail to maintain the achievements we have made in vaccination, we risk the resurgence of deadly diseases like measles, yellow fever and polio. By working together to ensure the survival and prosperity of the people of Burkina Faso, of Africa and of the world, we will together write the most magnificent pages in our common history.”
Included in the total figure is US$ 0.9 billion in long-term pledges made to the innovative International Finance Facility for Immunisation (IFFIm), which will be used when needed to raise immediate funds on the capital markets.
“As the world battles against coronavirus, today’s UK-hosted Global Vaccine Summit has been a superb example of what we can achieve when we all take action together,” said Anne-Marie Trevelyan, UK International Development Secretary. “We know vaccines work, and I’m incredibly proud that we’ve exceeded Gavi’s pledging target to help protect 300 million more children from deadly illnesses through routine immunisation. This will help stop the spread of infection around the world, now, and in the future.”
The world’s biggest vaccine manufacturers also committed to continue supplying the billions of doses needed to continue increasing vaccine coverage across Africa and Asia. The Vaccine Alliance is one of the world’s largest and most successful public-private partnerships, and the wider private sector continued to show support for its mission with the announcement of more than US$ 70 million of new pledges and partnerships, bringing new technology, networks and expertise to help solve some of global health’s most intractable problems.
“On behalf of the countless vaccinators, supply chain workers, programme managers and the many, many others that work tirelessly every day to ensure children in vulnerable countries continue to receive lifesaving vaccines – thank you,” said Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Gavi Board Chair. “We have made incredible progress over the past two decades improving vaccine coverage and reducing child mortality across Africa and Asia. This funding will give countries new hope that, despite the devastating impact of COVID-19, this progress can be sustained and built on. The Alliance will now get to work making this happen.”
The Global Vaccine Summit also saw the launch of the Advance Market Commitment for COVID-19 Vaccines (Gavi Covax AMC), a new innovative financing instrument to provide access to COVID-19 vaccines for low- and middle-income countries. This is the first building block towards a global mechanism to ensure equitable access to future COVID-19 vaccines. US$ 567 million was raised today in initial seed money for the AMC from 12 donors.
“As we celebrate a historic day we must also turn towards our next challenge: ensuring universal access to COVID-19 vaccines,” said Dr Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. “One thing that has been made all too clear over the past few months is that this disease does not respect borders, which is why this global problem requires a global solution. After today’s success, we now need support to help ensure the most vulnerable people in low- and middle-income countries – as well as those in high- and upper middle-income countries – have access to COVID-19 vaccines.”
Outcomes of the Global Vaccine Summit
In addition to raising US$ 8.8 billion for Gavi’s 2021-25 period – the full list of pledges is available here – the Vaccine Summit also saw a number of new commitments and partnerships launched to support Gavi’s mission. These included:
Boosting vaccine supply for the world’s poorest countries
· AstraZeneca today became the first vaccine manufacturer to sign up to the Gavi Covax AMC. Under the terms of a Memorandum of Understanding signed today, AstraZeneca will guarantee 300 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine it is developing in collaboration with the University of Oxford. These doses will be supplied upon licensure or WHO prequalification.
· A historic commitment from vaccine manufacturers MSD, GSK, Innovax, Serum Institute of India (SII) and Walvax to increase the supply of HPV vaccine, which protects against cervical cancer, to lower-income countries. Thanks to this commitment Gavi estimates that up to 84 million girls in the poorest countries could receive HPV vaccines in the next five-year period, averting 1.4 million future cervical cancer deaths.
· An announcement this week that the Serum Institute of India (SII) has become the third supplier of pneumococcal conjugate vaccines (PCV) under the pneumococcal Advance Market Commitment (AMC), and the first developing country vaccine manufacturer to access the global PCV market. The Indian manufacturer will provide 10 million doses each year to Gavi countries at only US$ 2.00 a dose, less than 1.5% of the public price in high-income countries.
· The European Investment Bank (EIB), UNICEF and Gavi are designing a novel guarantee mechanism for vaccine procurement. Backed by the International Finance Facility for Immunisation (IFFIm) balance sheet, the innovative finance instrument would, in particular, aim to guarantee Gavi’s financial obligations to UNICEF for its procurement of vaccines on behalf of Gavi-supported countries. This mechanism will continue to improve efficiency and allow Gavi to purchase more vaccines and immunise more children.
· A Memorandum of Agreement between Gavi and the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent (IFRC) to protect the world against the threat of epidemics by increasing coverage and equitable use of vaccines globally.
Supply Chain Strengthening
· UPS Foundation is providing US$ 3 million in cash and in-kind services to continue to help strengthen supply chain networks that deliver life-saving vaccines to children in the world’s poorest countries. The contribution will leverage a match of US$ 2 million from the Gavi Matching Fund to expand on previous UPS Foundation efforts.
· The ELMA Vaccines and Immunization Foundation and Nexleaf Analytics will partner with Gavi to further strengthen the vaccine cold chain in Tanzania. ELMA will pledge US$ 1.5 million, which will be matched by the Gavi Matching Fund, bringing the total sum to US$ 3 million.
Support for Frontline Health Workers
· The Rockefeller Foundation will invest US$ 5 million to support the adaption and scale up of innovative approaches and digital technologies that empower frontline health workers responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and continuing immunisation services.
· Laerdal Global Health, and the Laerdal Million Lives Fund will provide support to frontline health workers with a commitment of up to US$ 10 million that will leverage the organsation’s expertise in building resilient health and education systems, using cutting-edge digital technologies. The support will be matched by the Gavi Matching Fund and also be applied to Gavi’s broader innovation agenda through the INFUSE platform.
Digitising Immunisation Data
· Airtel Nigeria, Nigeria’s leading mobile telecommunications company, will provide up to US$ 5.9 million in cash and in-kind services for the E-Reporting Project, which will digitise a paper-based vaccine reporting system and provide digital tools to primary health care workers across Nigeria for the accurate collection of essential data. The Airtel contribution will be pooled with cash from the Gavi Matching Fund for a total project investment of US$11.1 million.
· Mastercard will adapt its Wellness Pass solution for the COVID-19 response and is connecting with customers and cardholders through its donation platform, in an effort to mobilise millions of pounds of resources for Gavi, including from the Gavi Matching Fund for contributions above £1 million.
Generating Demand for Vaccines
· TikTok have committed US$ 10 million to support Gavi’s deployment in Africa of eventual COVID-19 vaccines, as well as its strengthening of routine immunisation programmes. Gavi will also explore working with TikTok to use its technology, operational expertise and platform to increase immunisation and vaccination awareness to address the issue of misinformation. The donation will be matched by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation through the Gavi Matching Fund.
· Unilever, through its Lifebuoy brand, will partner with Gavi to expand its award-winning ‘Safal Shuruaat/Successful Beginnings,’ an integrated handwashing with soap and immunisation demand generation programme — which is currently being implemented in India. Unilever will pledge € 3 million, which Gavi will aim to match through the Gavi Matching Fund, bringing the total sum to € 6 million. This is in addition to a donation of almost 2.9 million bars of Lux soap to the Pakistan immunisation programme to protect to parents seeking immunisation services and healthcare workers on the frontline.
Additional Financing for Vaccines
· United Bank of Africa Foundation will draw on its network and expertise to raise US$ 1.5 million in funding for immunisation and health system strengthening programmes across the African continent, starting with Nigeria.
· Gamers Without Borders (GWB), an initiative of Saudi Arabian Federation for Electronic and Intellectual Sports (SAFEIS), has raised to date more than US$1.3 million for Gavi through an online gaming competition. The competition will conclude on 7 June 2020, with a total US$ 10 million prize fund being donated to charities leading the fight against the spread of coronavirus.
· Reed Hastings, global entrepreneur and co-founder and CEO of Netflix, and Patty Quillin have committed US$ 30 million to support the Alliance’s response to COVID-19 and help protect the world against new outbreaks of other infectious diseases.