UK urged to guarantee that any Covid-19 medicines or technologies created with public funds are available to all, patent-free

International organisations call on UK government to prevent Big Pharma profiteering from Covid-19


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Coronavirus is killing the poor far more than the rich. A vaccine must be free for everyone

19 May 2020

Pneumonia is killing 2,000 people every day. But not because of coronavirus. For nearly twenty years, millions of children have not had access to the patented vaccine manufactured by Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline due to its high cost, which has generated billions in profit for those corporations.


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Nearly 70 poor countries will only be able to vaccinate one in ten people against Covid-19 next year unless urgent action is taken by governments and the pharmaceutical industry to make sure enough doses are produced, a group of campaigning organisations warned today, as the UK begins to rollout vaccinations.

In response to the news that the Oxford University vaccine shows 70% protection, Heidi Chow, pharmaceuticals campaigner at Global Justice Now said: 
“These results are good news, but with so much government funding for this vaccine, it is time Oxford University’s deal with pharma giant AstraZeneca was made public. Individual parts have been leaked to the media, but the deal itself has been kept secret, so we don’t know the legal framework for making the vaccine available to the world.  

Just 12% of the global population stand to receive the majority of doses from a vaccine that has received billions in public funding