The World Health Organization (WHO) has once again blamed wealthy countries for essentially hoarding coronavirus vaccines and treatments at the expense of poorer and smaller nations.
During a Tuesday Q&A session with the media the WHO's technical lead for the coronavirus, Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, blasted the current situation as "unfair" and "immoral" - even going so far as to accuse wealthy nations of adding to the global deaths with their policies.
"This is not just unfair, it’s not just immoral, it’s prolonging the pandemic," Dr. Kerkhove said. "And it is resulting in people dying."
"If we had used the vaccine doses that were available differently, we be in a very different situation right now globally," she added. For weeks the WHO has argued against plans for several countries to initiate a booster program for their populations, which has lately included the US, given that places like the entire continent of Africa has only fully vaccinated 3% of the population.
According to CNBC, "Given the current pace of vaccinations, the WHO said almost 80% of Africa’s countries will be unable to vaccinate the 10% of their populations most susceptible to severe Covid symptoms by the end of the month."
In contrast, the US CDC has recently reported that over 62% of the entire American population has now received as least one vaccine dose, including 75% of US adults. US health officials have this week said they are confident boosters for US adults will begin September 20.
The WHO's other top epidemiologist, Dr. Mike Ryan, director of the WHO’s health emergencies program, said that the idea that the globe is sharing its resources is a sham. "The rhetoric is fine, it’s all about sharing, it’s all about fairness," he said before bluntly stating, "But in reality, when push comes to shove, these products are available, they are hoarded in countries, and they’re not shared."
Last month the WHO called for a moratorium on boosters...
In his latest plea for rich countries to stop hoarding Covid-19 vaccines, the head of the WHO said Wednesday that there should be a moratorium on booster shots. https://t.co/Nn9A4XaQVn— Forbes Asia (@ForbesAsia) August 5, 2021
Currently Israel is the most out front in terms of a large-scale booster program, with millions having received a third shot. Israel’s coronavirus czar, Salman Zarka, went so far as to begin telling Israelis to be ready for a fourth shot in statements early this week.