SPAIN: Spain, the first and leading European Union donor in the region, is speeding up its vaccine donations to Latin America and the Caribbean. The first shipment of 101,760 doses of AstraZeneca will be handed over to Ecuador on Monday. Similarly, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Paraguay, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Jamaica and Surinam will shortly receive vaccines donated by Spain through the COVAX Mechanism. Along this progressive line, Spain is due to donate some 6 million vaccines to Latin America and the Caribbean over the summer.
These beneficiaries have been selected by COVAX based on the epidemiological needs of the countries in the region, under the criteria of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHA).
These shipments are on top of the vaccine donations already made to Peru, Guatemala, Paraguay and Nicaragua. All these donations fall within the framework of the agreement entered into between AstraZeneca, COVAX and Spain.
The aim of extending vaccinations to the largest percentage of the world’s population possible is defined in the Universal Access Plan: Sharing vaccines against COVID-19, “Solidarity in Vaccination”, approved by the Government of Spain back in January, which defines the donation strategy.
The main aim of this Plan is to contribute to guaranteeing fair, affordable and universal access to the vaccine as a global public good so as to respond to the call for solidarity made by Spanish society. This also helps enhance the safety of everyone, including Spanish citizens, since “no-one will be safe until we are all safe”.
The Government of Spain has undertaken to donate a total of 22.5 million doses of the vaccines authorised in the European Union and used in Spain, of which at least 7.5 million will be allocated to Ibero-American countries. These donations are channeled through the COVAX Mechanism – coordinated by the Vaccine Alliance (GAVI), the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and the World Health Organization (WHO) – with logistical support from UNICEF and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHA), in line with Spain’s interest in structuring a multilateral response to the crisis stemming from COVID-19.
Spain, through the joint and coordinated work of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and of Health, is making these vaccine donations in close coordination with the EU and its Member States within the framework of Team Europe which, to date, has contributed almost 3 billion euros to the COVAX Mechanism and committed to donating some 200 million doses. The aim of the Mechanism is to immunise at least 20% of the population of the 190 member nations before the end of the year.
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