World Health Organisation-backed initiative to accelerate the development and manufacture of a coronavirus vaccine and make it available to all has so far garnered only $3 billion in investments, when the need is for at least $38 billion.
This initiative, called the COVAX Facility, aims to pool in resources to accelerate the development of the most promising of the coronavirus vaccine candidates, and then ensure that it is equitably accessible to all the participating countries. This is the alternative to the go-it-alone approach some rich countries like the United States have been taking by funding the development of their preferred candidate vaccines, and pre-booking guaranteed supplies in return, in case these are successful and get approved.
The COVAX Facility, if successful, would ensure that poorer countries are not starved of the coronavirus vaccine whenever it is finally ready. As WHO has repeatedly emphasised, the goal should be to ensure that the vaccine should be available to some people, the most needy ones first, in all countries, rather than to all people in some countries.