Last week, Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance announced that it will purchase millions of doses of an Ebola vaccine to support large-scale vaccination efforts. Gavi is ready to begin procurement as soon as the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends a safe, effective antidote.
WHO, government representatives, and vaccine manufacturers have been pushing ahead with unprecedented speed to develop a vaccine to treat the virus and fight the outbreak. WHO Assistant Director-General Dr. Marie Paule Kieny recently stated, “Vaccines are not the magic bullet, but when ready, they may be a good part of the effort to turn the tide of the epidemic.”
This commitment will help to speed the process of immunizing at-risk populations in affected countries, as well as mobilizing the introduction of the vaccine and rebuilding devastated health systems. Noting the seriousness of the epidemic and the devastating consequences for people and communities, the Gavi Board approved plans that could include:
- Up to $300 million spent procuring up to 12 million doses of WHO recommended Ebola vaccine;
- Up to $45 million to help countries roll out the vaccine, including critical activities such as health worker training, social mobilization, surveillance and, if required, improvements to cold storage facilities; and
- Up to $45 million to assist with the recovery of health systems and immunization services for all vaccines in the countries affected by the outbreak.
The announcement highlights the collaborative efforts between WHO, Gavi, and global partners to ensure that people living in Ebola-affected countries are protected as soon as possible. Read the full Gavi announcement here to learn more.