This week in Covid news: Global inequities in vaccine doses; travel advice from the C.D.C.; and Cuomo’s book.
A new study by The New York Times found that although the Covid-19 vaccine has been given worldwide, more than 75 percent of it has been used by the richest nations in the world. Experts say it is not the failure of poor countries to buy vaccines, but how they help during the treatment period.
In the early days of the epidemic, when pharmacists had just started developing vaccines, inviting any of them was a risk. Wealthy countries can import more vaccines, but in doing so, they build products that small countries could buy, according to experts.
This prompted high-income countries, such as the United States, to apply for a fourfold vaccine. Canada has found a number of measures to protect the country six times this year. But Kenya expects that by 2023 it will have only 30% of vaccinated people, and only Covax will have the first 20%.
Covax, a global vaccination campaign run by the World Health Organization and others, has tried to change that. As of March 30, Covax had shipped 32.9 million vaccines to 70 countries and territories. Most of the shipments were to low-income countries. To put it bluntly, only 6 percent of the 564 million units provided worldwide.
Andrea Taylor, a researcher at Duke University who is studying vaccine contracts, says: “Errors are growing, unfortunately, and we expect them to be so for the next six months as rich countries continue to be the starting standards for the end of the manufacturing process.”
Here’s what we learned this week:
Federal health officials said Friday that Americans with a complete Covid-19 vaccine could walk at low risk, but to continue to be cautious like wearing a mask.
As Governor Andrew M. Cuomo of New York was writing a book that would be his portrayal as a hero of the plague, an upcoming report in the Department of Health threatened to reveal more coronavirus-related nursing care deaths than Cuomo officials had previously announced.
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine trial was found to be more effective for young people, perhaps more than for adults. The case did not find any sexually transmitted infections among children between the ages of 12 and 15, the companies said, and there were no serious side effects. More has not yet been reviewed by independent experts.