byanyima5_SIA KAMBOUAFP via Getty Images_covax SIA KAMBOU/AFP via Getty Images

The G7 Must Act to Vaccinate the World

The world’s richest countries are failing to champion the global cooperation needed to defeat the pandemic. At June’s G7 summit in the United Kingdom, leaders must agree on a financial plan to underpin international collaboration on COVID-19, starting with equitable access to vaccines.

LONDON – “Nobody is safe until everyone is safe” is the defining mantra of the COVID-19 era. It captures a fundamental truth. Faced with a virus that recognizes no borders, no country is an island - and there is no substitute for international solidarity.

The June G7 summit in the UK provides political leaders of the world’s richest countries an opportunity to demonstrate that solidarity. They should seize it by agreeing on a financial plan of action to underpin humanity’s battle with COVID-19, starting with equitable access to vaccines.

The development of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines was a scientific triumph. New partnerships involving governments, businesses, philanthropists, and multilateral institutions tested, delivered, and began administering vaccines in record time. The Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT-A), a unique partnership between the World Health Organization and others, provides a multilateral framework for cooperation on diagnosis, treatments, and vaccines. The COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access (COVAX) facility, a key pillar in that partnership, has so far delivered a total of 40 million doses in over 100 countries.

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