India ranks third in terms of the number of Covid-19 vaccine doses the country is committed to procure, a Wall Street Journal report has said. The United States and the European Union (EU) are at the first and the second positions, respectively.
The report is based on Duke University’s Launch and Scale Speedometer initiative, which studies factors that hinder the delivery of health innovations to lower-income countries. According to the Launch and Scale Speedometer initiative, India ranks third in terms of ‘COVID-19 Vaccine Advance Market Commitments by Country’ with the United States and the European Union ahead of it.
India’s confirmed dose purchases exceed 1.5 billion which is more than European Union’s 1.2 billion doses and the United States 1 billion doses. But the US and the EU rank ahead because of their potential dose purchases. The United States has signed up for more than 1.5 billion potential dose purchases. The EU has also signed up for more than 760 million potential dose purchases.
With over 1.5 billion potential dose purchases and 1 billion confirmed dose purchases, the US alone has signed up for more than 2.6 billion doses, which indicates it could inoculate its entire population more than once.
India is already prioritizing identifying people who would receive the coronavirus vaccine before others. The National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration is working on a time-bound process to inoculate maximum numbers of people once a fully effective vaccine is released.
US drugmaker Pfizer Inc and German partner BioNTech SE in its recently released final analysis of clinical-trial data showed that the efficacy of its coronavirus vaccine candidate is 95%.
Researchers at Duke University’s Launch and Scale Speedometer initiative say that the numbers show that more than 8 billion doses of Covid-19 vaccine are currently reserved due to advance market commitments before any clear outcome of the effectiveness of any of the vaccine candidates is yet to be released.
Researchers also fear that these advanced deals and deals being made to expand the current deals by high-income countries as well as middle-income countries creates a challenge for equal global distribution of coronavirus vaccines.