COVID vaccine: 100 million jabs in rich countries could go to waste by December

New data has shown that up to 100 millions jabs on reserve in richer countries could go to waste if not used by December—prompting leaders to urge donations.

Data group Airfinity has conducted an analysis that has found that 100 million stockpiled COVID vaccines in rich countries will expire and go to waste by the end of the year.

'It is unthinkable and unconscionable'

The research comes amid the struggle for poorer countries to gain access to vaccines, at the expense of the lives of its citizens. Further findings from the study show that about one million more deaths are set to occur around the world due to COVID-19—largely preventable if greater vaccine access was made available to poorer nations.

Gordon Brown, former prime minister of the UK and newly appointed ambassador by WHO to drive forward better global action on public health has said:

It is unthinkable and unconscionable that 100 million vaccines will have to be thrown away from the stockpiles of the rich countries, whilst the populations of the world’s poorest countries will pay for our vaccine waste in lives lost.

And added:

It is will be a profound and collective political tragedy if this summit misses the opportunity to act with doses transferred immediately to poorer countries.

Donations from the UK

Brown has since sent the results to Joe Biden to urge him to avoid unnecessarily wasting jabs that could be used on millions of Americans of who have yet to receive even one dose. In the UK, Boris Johnson has pledged to donate 100 million doses to developing countries of which nine million have already been sent out. The former PM said:

Global political leaders must match the extraordinary commitment and cooperation of scientists and manufacturers who have created the opportunity to vaccinate the entire world.
UK commits to donating over 100 million surplus COVID vaccines UK commits to donating over 100 million surplus COVID vaccines