By Quentin Choy
June 3, 2021
The Biden administration announced its plans by the end of June to distribute 80 million COVID-19 vaccines to countries around the world, especially to those who are suffering from variants and increased cases such as India and Brazil. Regions such as Latin America and Southeast Asia are also emphasized.
With an American population who has mostly been vaccinated and with a segment of Americans still hesitant to receiving the vaccine despite efforts from state governments to incentivize those on the fence, this global distribution is fantastic news. Many countries are unable to manufacture their own vaccines due to either limited economic and industrial capabilities or to restrictions due to COVID-19 vaccine patent protections.
Since most Americans who want the vaccine have received it, the time has come to share the vaccine with the rest of the world, as this truly is a global pandemic. Once international travel returns to normal, unvaccinated people coming to America could pose a public safety threat. This is why it is so important to be sure that people from all countries are vaccinated rather than just our own.
President Biden echoed this idea in a White House statement, saying “as long as this pandemic is raging anywhere in the world, the American people will still be vulnerable.”
The U.S. should help countries manufacture their own vaccines as well so that they may continue to vaccinate rather than receiving a one-time vaccination rate bump from the United States and so that the world can continue to inch closer to the pre-pandemic world.
This is a global fight, and while it is good that the U.S. leads the fight, other countries must be equipped to take on the fight as well.
Image Courtesy of Deccan Herald.