09 Sep COVID VACCINATION : TRACING TARGETS
CONTEXT: Its now relieving time for the world as we have now passed the crucial waves of the COVID-19 virus which rattled the world for long. The vaccine is the most effective tool to deal with the unprecedented threat of the virus. WHO (World Health Organisation) has set the target to vaccinate 70% of the humanity by mid-2022 i.e., June/July 2022. The timeline has lapsed and we are ahead now to check the status and India’s contribution and possible solution for it.
WHAT IS THE STATUS OF TARGET?
In October 2021, WHO has decided to vaccinate 70% of the world population with COVID-19 protection dose to spread its further spread and to make it a dwarf disease. This target was set with the view to promote vaccine equity and justice specially keeping poor and underdeveloped countries in mind.
By the month of September 2022, we are having only 3% of global vaccination in underdeveloped countries with one dose and if overall this figure stands below 10% of all. Thus, it is clear that WHO missed it’s target by a considerable margin and there are many possible reasons as-
- The time taken for research and approval of the vaccine
- Vaccine hesitancy and reservation is still major factor in the African and Asiatic societies.
- The adaptability of the COVID-19 virus which modified in different strains, India was impacted huge by Omicron strain.
- The Poor funding commitments and its non- followance which made WHOs target a distant dream.
- The geopolitics involved makes the process further complicated and thus, delayed.
Hence it is clear that world agency has failed its target but attributed to many socio-economic reasons making the humanity deprived of ‘Herd immunity’ and to remain under constant threat of micro virus.
INDIAS HELPING HANDS
India, being the Pharmacy of the world is the producer of 60 % of world vaccine and is said to be 60-80% supplier of UNO vaccine procurement. There is hardly any doubt that India can solve the problem we as a humanity is facing, even now.
On her part, India contributed 594.35 lakhs of COVID doses by 2021 to almost 72 countries in need. Most of them are poor and underdeveloped countries. It’s also interesting to know, of this supply 82 lakh were as gifts and 175 lakh were under GAVI’s COVAX programme – which shows the classic example of global vaccine responsibility. Even in severe rattling strain of 2nd wave the supply was continued considering the India’s role to save the Humanity. India also moved proposal to keep IPR –patents out for vaccine related to COVID-19.
- India, the follower of ‘Vasudhaiv kutumbakam’ (the whole world is our family) benefitted by saving thousands of life as moral duty.
- Apart from it also benefitted by vaccine diplomacy and gaining diplomatic advantage as acted as friend in need is friend indeed.
- It also provide more market access to Indian vaccine, even in developed countries.
- The production created employment and taxation to the government.
- There are many tangible and intangible benefits with this timely help.
WHAT FURTHER NEEDS TO DONE?
- The production need to promote and accelerated so that supply can be consistent.
- There is need to strengthened global vaccine supply chain to fast forward the process.
- There is need to keep patent and rights away from the global danger and to promote its free use.
- Geopolitics has to keep aside and free responsible funding has to ensure so that the drive to save could never be halted.
- For future, there is need for a treaty including all cooperation, sharing of data, genome sequencing to avoid any regional disease to become mammothic like COVID.
Though, target deadline passed but still the threat is active and it’s better to late than never. The world has to unite, to accelerate the vaccination drive. The global co-operation and responsible contribution can shield the world form current and future emerging dangers.