In response to the announcement from the World Health Organisation today, that its Strategic Advisory Group of Experts recommends the use of the Oxford / AstraZeneca vaccine, Oxfam’s Health Policy Manager, Anna Marriott, said:
“It is great news that the World Health Organisation has approved the Oxford / AstraZeneca vaccine, given it is currently the only successful COVID-19 vaccine candidate to have sold the majority of doses to developing countries.
“However, given the questions about the effectiveness of this vaccine against the South Africa variant of COVID-19, it is even more imperative that all of the pharmaceutical companies are transparent and commit to sharing their technology and pricing policies in order to get this horrendous pandemic under control.
“Our dependence on just a few pharmaceutical corporations is absurd in the face of extreme vaccine shortages and the rise of mutations. There’s also the danger that rich countries will cherry pick the vaccines they believe to be most effective, while poorer countries are left with whatever they can get.
“Governments need to act together to override this broken system of patents, monopolies and secrecy to ensure safe and effective vaccines can be available to everyone, everywhere.”
For more information, or to arrange an interview please contact: Sarah Dransfield, in the Oxfam press office, on + 44 (0)7884 114825 / email [email protected]
Oxfam is part of The Peoples’ Vaccine Alliance, a coalition of global and national organizations and activists united under a common aim of campaigning for a ‘People’s Vaccine’. The call for a People’s Vaccine is backed by past and present world leaders, health experts, faith leaders and economists. For more information visit: https://peoplesvaccine.org