Global Milestone: 1 Billionth COVID Vaccination
April 25, 2021 – Less than five months after the first needle entered the first arm to deliver the first COVID-19 vaccine to a 90-year-old grandmother in the UK, the world celebrated the 1 billionth blocking dose coronavirus vaccine this weekend. ,
While it is not known who received the billionth dose, or where it occurred, the milestone alone is remarkable.
Remarkable, but not enough. Bloomberg reports that the world distributes 18.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines per day. At this rate, however, it would take 19 months before even 75% of the world was vaccinated.
Worse yet, the geographic victories in the fight against COVID-19 are heavily skewed towards rich countries.
In India, where daily new cases exceeded 300,000 in one week, only 1.4% of the population has been fully vaccinated, The Washington Post reported. Compare that to the United States, where 25% of adults are fully vaccinated and over 40% have received at least one dose, while some states and cities are refusing doses due to lack of demand for the vaccines.
Criticism from the US and UK has accelerated in recent days as world leaders question why countries aren’t sharing what appears to be a vaccine glut.
On Sunday, US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan spoke with Ajit Doval, his counterpart in India. In a statement, NSC spokeswoman Emily Horne said the United States was determined to help – but not yet with the actual vaccine doses.
“The United States is working tirelessly to deploy available resources and supplies,” said Horne.
Horne said the United States was providing the “specific raw material” needed for India to make its Covidshield vaccine, and would also provide the country with drugs, test kits, ventilators and personal protective equipment. The United States will also help India with other materials and pay to help develop the manufacturing capacity of BioE, which makes the vaccine in India.
But India-born US Representative Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-IL urged the Biden administration to release excess vaccines.
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