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Things You Should Know About COVAX

Updated On Nov 07, 2020

The year 2020 is about to end. With a new year just a month and a half away, every soul across the globe is hoping for the coronavirus to end. The pandemic may have altered the lives of many, but the hope to bid goodbye to the deadly coronavirus is instilled in every heart. 

People have been desperately waiting for a coronavirus vaccine to arrive for months now. Finally, there is a successful attempt towards the same in the form of COVAX. 

Also read: Social Distancing Guidelines to Fight Coronavirus in India

What is COVAX?

Founded in the year 2020, COVAX is COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access (COVAX) Facility. Formerly known as The COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access Facility, COVAX is aimed towards ensuring that all countries, whether rich or poor, get access to a safe, effective vaccine. 

COVAX is co-led by Gavi, CEPI (Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations) and WHO. COVAX can be referred to as the vaccines pillar of the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator. Talking about the ACT Accelerator, it is a global collaboration for the acceleration, development, production, and equitable access to COVID-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines.

According to WHO, a safe and effective vaccine against coronavirus will be available in the year 2021. With COVAX, the richer countries  will gain access to a portfolio of potential Covid-19 vaccines while the lower income countries will receive financial support and equal access to the vaccine once it is available. 

Serving as the global platform for maximizing the chances of successfully developing COVID-19 vaccine, COVAX aims towards minimizing the costs of the vaccine so that every person, whether rich or poor, attains better healthcare against the deadly coronavirus.

You may also like to read: Coronavirus Symptoms and Precautions in India

How Does the COVAX Plan Work?

The COVAX Facility accumulates the buying power of all participants by getting the manufacturers of the vaccine to produce the vaccines at scale and make risky early investments in manufacturing capacity. The prime idea behind it is that by accumulating these resources, COVAX will make sure that quick access to new Covid-19 vaccines is made as soon as they are developed. Note that Gavi is also lending a helping hand to some poor countries to get ready to distribute the coronavirus vaccines outside of the facility.

India and COVAX

With COVAX in existence, one question that is arising in the minds of the people is that has India agreed to buy coronavirus vaccine doses through the COVAX facility? And if so, how many million doses of the coronavirus vaccine will India get through COVAX? Well, there is no doubt that India is one among the 92 countries that is eligible to access Covid-19 vaccines through GAVI’s COVAX Advance Market Commitment (AMC). However, discussion of the terms of India’s potential participation in the AMC are still underway. So, as of now, there is a strong hope of India buying the vaccines through COVAX. Please note that the Gates Foundation has signed an agreement with Serum Institute of India to facilitate vaccine production.  The foundation is said to be providing at-risk funding of $300 million to manufacture up to 200 million Covid-19 vaccines doses for India and low- and middle-income countries. 

When Will The COVID-19 Vaccine Be Ready?

As of now, there are 200 vaccine candidates under development, with multiple in clinical trials. Most of the coronavirus vaccine candidates are in their clinical trials- Phase III, which is the ultimate stage before the approval of the vaccine. Until now, it can be only expected that some vaccines have completed clinical trials and will gain approval for use in 2021.

When Will COVID-19 vaccine Be Available In India?

The allocation of the available doses will be done to all countries taking part in the COVAX Facility, as soon as any of the present candidates for Covid-19 vaccine undertakes clinical trials and receives regulatory approval successfully. This allocation will be done using a standardized allocation formula, proportional to the country’s total population size.

So, talking about India, we can say that it might take a few months or even years for every individual to get the vaccine. 

Conclusion 

COVAX has brought a new ray of hope in the lives of all across the globe. Struggling in the times of coronavirus may be getting tougher day by day, but the best we can do is wait for the vaccine to arrive. 

You may also like to read: Coronavirus Vaccine Status In India

Disclaimer: This article is issued in the general public interest and meant for general information purposes only. Readers are advised not to rely on the contents of the article as conclusive in nature and should research further or consult an expert in this regard.

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