Campaigners call for concrete commitments on access to COVID-19 vaccines and treatments at global fundraising summit

Monday, 4 May, 2020

A coalition of social justice, international aid and public health organisations in the UK [1] is calling on the government to ensure all funding raised at Coronavirus Global Response Summit on 4 May [2] leads to equitable access on vaccines, treatments and tests: 

“We welcome the government’s commitment to the WHO Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator and its core aim of ensuring equitable global access to COVID-19 vaccines, treatments and tests. However, this commitment now needs to be backed up with concrete action and accountability to ensure all funding pledged at the Summit actually leads to medical products that reach all who need them, especially the most vulnerable.

We are calling on the UK government to use its role as co-host of the Summit to ensure that conditions are attached to all funding pledged. These conditions should enable the mass production of any COVID-19 vaccines, treatments and tests to meet global demand and ensure that they are affordable to all countries and free for the public. 

This can be achieved by attaching conditions that promote the sharing of know-how, clinical trial data and health technologies. Intellectual property including patent monopolies and other exclusivities on any COVID-19 medical products developed using public funding should not be allowed. Conditions should also demand full  transparency of funding, research costs and product prices.

The government should push for civil society to have a say in the decisions made by the Accelerator and for strong and transparent accountability mechanisms that enable the public to track progress towards equitable access.

Providing funds for researching and developing COVID-19 health products with no conditions attached will result in pharmaceutical monopolies that lead to high prices, restricted supply and corporate profiteering, at the expense of patients’ lives. The only way to turn the rhetoric on equitable access into reality is to attach conditions on public funding and introduce transparent accountability procedures so that public funding leads to the development of much-needed vaccines, treatments and tests for all.”

This statement is coordinated by Global Justice Now

Contact: Heidi Chow 07595 048 875

 

[1] List of organisations and individuals publishing this statement: 

Global Justice Now

STOPAIDS

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) UK

Health Poverty Action

Universities Allied for Essential Medicines UK

Medact 

T1International

Results UK

Just Treatment

Act Up London

People’s Health Movement UK

TranspariMED

Salamander Trust

Youth Stop AIDS

Chasing Zero

Frontline AIDS 

 

Fifa Rahman, Board Member, Unitaid NGO Delegation

Graham Dutfield, Professor of International Governance, University of Leeds


[2] The UK is co-hosting a Coronavirus Global Response Summit on 4 May, aiming to raise £7 billion to develop vaccines, treatments and tests to help end the coronavirus pandemic .https://www.gov.uk/government/news/uk-leads-way-as-nations-endorse-landmark-pledge-to-make-coronavirus-vaccines-and-treatments-available-to-all