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05 August 2020
The African Union (AU) recently published a COVID-19 vaccine strategy. The strategy was announced in a communique issued by the AU ministers of health and heads of delegation following a virtual conference on 24 and 25 June 2020.
The ministers considered the following factors, among others, when devising the strategy:
Before setting out the strategy, the ministers made the following preliminary acknowledgments:
Securing sufficient vaccine supplies
This aspect entails the following:
Removing barriers to vaccine roll-out
This aspect is also multi-faceted and involves:
Africa is facing a crisis that calls for a continent-wide response. It is encouraging that a consolidated approach is being followed, including utilising the IP exemptions allowed under the TRIPS Agreement.
Access to medicine in Africa is a recurring concern and it may be an opportune moment to use the response to the COVID-19 pandemic as a blueprint to secure future access to pharmaceuticals – including vaccines – for Africans.
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