New York, April 7 (Korea Bizwire) – MedAccess, the Open Society Foundations, and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance today announced a new partnership to create a Risk Sharing Facility to help countries procure additional COVID-19 vaccine doses, including variant-adapted doses in response to risks and shocks. The $200 million facility is designed to enable countries to protect more of their people and support COVAX’s ambitions to make COVID vaccine procurement more sustainable and more tailored to country needs.
The Gavi COVAX Advance Market Commitment (Gavi COVAX AMC) provides COVID-19 vaccines free of charge for 92 of the world’s lowest-income countries, helping them to meet the objectives set out in their national vaccination strategies—with more than 1.2 billion doses already shipped to AMC countries. In addition, AMC countries can also use the COVAX Cost-Sharing Mechanism to order more doses using domestic resources or low-cost financing from their multilateral development bank (MDB) partners, enabling them to protect more people, more quickly.
The new guarantees are aimed at increasing take-up of the Cost-Sharing Mechanism by facilitating the financing of orders. MedAccess will provide a $100 million procurement guarantee to enable COVAX to order more doses from manufacturers on behalf of AMC countries choosing to participate in cost-sharing. By purchasing through COVAX, countries benefit from lower prices per dose negotiated for a range of COVID-19 vaccines.
The Open Society Foundations will provide a further procurement guarantee of up to $100 million alongside MedAccess, through the Soros Economic Development Fund. This will help COVAX to respond to country requests for additional doses in the event of a future shock or demand spike.
“COVID-19 has wreaked havoc on health and financial systems in every country,” said MedAccess CEO Michael Anderson. “Donors have stepped up with huge sums of money to drive COVAX’s initial dose allocations, but innovative finance can unlock even greater value. Our support for Gavi will enable COVAX to work with countries to speed up access to these essential vaccines and put their programmes on a more sustainable footing.”
“Innovative financing solutions are crucial to the success of global vaccination in 2022,” added Dr. Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. “Our partnership with MedAccess, thanks to the support of the Open Society Foundations, will allow countries to access additional resources through COVAX cost-sharing, helping them to meet the goals set out in their national vaccination strategies and respond to uncertainty and risks such as new variants. Together, we can break COVID-19.”
“The inequities in access to vaccines in poor countries is one of the biggest, collective global failings of our time,” said Mark Malloch-Brown, President of the Open Society Foundations. “Since the beginning of the pandemic, Open Society has responded in diverse ways to ensure that the most vulnerable have equitable access to vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics—just like those in rich countries. COVAX’s Cost-Sharing Mechanism is an additional and important way to ensure governments have the agency, on their terms, to determine if, how, and when they acquire low-cost doses for their populations.”
The COVAX Cost-Sharing Mechanism was launched in partnership between Gavi, the World Bank, and the Asian Development Bank in July 2021. Since then, the European Investment Bank has also joined and committed €300 million in financing for countries wishing to access additional doses through the mechanism. Countries with MDB-approved vaccination programmes can make requests to COVAX for additional vaccine doses. To date, Gavi has already ordered 140 million additional vaccine doses through cost sharing on behalf of 15 AMC countries, at a total value of $800 million.
Countries specify the preferred type of vaccine, number of doses and their desired delivery window, enabling COVAX to aggregate demand and exercise its options under agreements with vaccine manufacturers. The MDB provides a payment confirmation, which enables COVAX to confirm its order. Subject to finalisation of the legal agreement, MedAccess and Open Society’s support aims to provide a backstop for Gavi during the period from exercising its option to country payment being confirmed; without the guarantees Gavi would be required to hold donor funds in reserve. This guarantee provides financial independence to Gavi for the benefit of COVAX AMC country partners.
On April 8, 2022, Gavi will hold the 2022 Gavi COVAX AMC Summit, co-hosted by Germany. Gavi aims to raise at least $5.2 billion in urgent financial support for COVAX, including $3.8 billion in donor funding for lower-income countries supported by the Gavi COVAX AMC. At least $1 billion of the $5.2 billion is intended to come from cost-sharing.
To date, COVAX has shipped more than 1.4 billion COVID-19 vaccine doses to 145 countries and territories.
Rob Kelly, Head of External Relations at MedAccess
+44 7867 132038
Evan O’Connell, Senior Media Relations Manager at Gavi
+41 79 682 18 95
Erin Greenberg, Senior Communications Officer, Open Society Foundations
MedAccess is a U.K.-based social finance company with a mission to make global healthcare markets work for everyone. Its core purpose is to make medical supplies more widely available at lower prices in under-served markets. By applying the rigour and skills of business finance, it provides a novel solution to the challenge. MedAccess offers financial guarantees and debt products that reduce commercial risk and allow medical manufacturers to accelerate supplies into new markets at affordable and sustainable prices. In this way, vaccines, medicines, diagnostic tests and medical devices can reach patients far sooner than existing market forces would allow.
For more information see www.medaccess.org and follow MedAccess on Twitter @MedAccessUK.
COVAX, the vaccines pillar of the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator, is co-led by CEPI, Gavi and WHO – working in partnership with developed and developing country vaccine manufacturers, UNICEF, PAHO, the World Bank, and others. It is the only global initiative that is working with governments and manufacturers to ensure COVID-19 vaccines are available worldwide to both high-income and lower-income countries.
Gavi’s role in COVAX
Gavi leads on procurement and delivery at scale for COVAX: designing and managing the COVAX Facility and the Gavi COVAX AMC and working with its traditional Alliance partners UNICEF and WHO, along with governments, on country readiness and delivery.
As part of this role, Gavi hosts the Office of the COVAX Facility to coordinate the operation and governance of the mechanism as a whole, holds financial and legal relationships with 193 Facility participants, and manages the COVAX Facility deals portfolio: negotiating advance purchase agreements with manufacturers of promising vaccine candidates to secure doses on behalf of all COVAX Facility participants. Gavi also coordinates design, operationalisation and fundraising for the Gavi COVAX AMC, the mechanism that provides access to donor-funded doses of vaccine to 92 lower-income economies. As part of this work, Gavi provides funding and oversight for UNICEF procurement and delivery of vaccines to all AMC participants—operationalising the advance purchase agreements between Gavi and manufacturers—as well as support for partners’ and governments work on readiness and delivery. This includes tailored support to governments, UNICEF, WHO and other partners for cold chain equipment, technical assistance, syringes, vehicles, and other aspects of the vastly complex logistical operation for delivery. Gavi also co-designed, raises funds for and supports the operationalisation of the AMC’s no-fault compensation mechanism as well as the COVAX Humanitarian Buffer.
About Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance
Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance is a public-private partnership that helps vaccinate half the world’s children against some of the world’s deadliest diseases. Since its inception in 2000, Gavi has helped to immunise a whole generation—over 888 million children—and prevented more than 15 million future deaths, helping to halve child mortality in 73 lower-income countries. Gavi also plays a key role in improving global health security by supporting health systems as well as funding global stockpiles for Ebola, cholera, meningitis and yellow fever vaccines. After two decades of progress, Gavi is now focused on protecting the next generation and reaching zero dose children remaining deprived of even a single vaccine shot still being left behind, employing innovative finance and the latest technology—from drones to biometrics—to save millions more lives, prevent outbreaks before they can spread and help countries on the road to self-sufficiency. Learn more at www.gavi.org and connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.
Gavi is a co-convener of COVAX, the vaccines pillar of the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator, together with the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and the World Health Organization (WHO). In its role Gavi is focused on procurement and delivery for COVAX: coordinating the design, implementation and administration of the COVAX Facility and the Gavi COVAX AMC and working with its Alliance partners UNICEF and WHO, along with governments, on country readiness and delivery.
The Vaccine Alliance brings together developing country and donor governments, the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the World Bank, the vaccine industry, technical agencies, civil society, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and other private sector partners. View the full list of donor governments and other leading organizations that fund Gavi’s work here.
About Open Society Foundations
The Open Society Foundations work to build vibrant and inclusive democracies whose governments are accountable and open to the participation of all people. We are active in more than 120 countries, making us the world’s largest private funder of independent groups working for justice, democratic governance, and human rights. The Soros Economic Development Fund supports Open Society’s mission through investments that advance the Foundations’ enduring commitments of equity, expression, and justice.
For more information, see www.opensocietyfoundations.org and www.soroseconomicdevelopmentfund.org
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Source: Open Society Foundations via GLOBE NEWSWIRE