clearn.png
Friday January 15th, 2021 10:10PM

Official: Africa secures close to 300 million vaccine doses

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — The African Union has secured close to 300 million COVID-19 vaccine doses in the largest such agreement yet for Africa, a continental official said Tuesday.

Nicaise Ndembi, senior science adviser for the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told The Associated Press in an interview that the current AU chair, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, is expected to announce the news on Wednesday.

The 300 million doses are being secured independently of the global COVAX effort aimed at distributing COVID-19 vaccines to lower-income countries, Ndembi said.

“We have reached the final stage of our deals,” he said, referring questions about who will be providing the vaccines and at what cost to the upcoming announcement.

The news comes as coronavirus infections spike again in parts of Africa, especially South Africa, where a rapidly spreading variant of the coronavirus now makes up most of the new cases. The continent over the weekend surpassed 3 million confirmed cases since the start of the pandemic, with more than 1.2 million in South Africa.

“We plan to have these by the end of the first quarter” of 2021, Ndembi said of the nearly 300 million doses, which will be allocated on the continental platform the AU set up last year to make it easier for Africa’s 54 countries to pool their purchasing power and buy pandemic supplies in bulk.

“We’re expecting 600 million doses from the COVAX facility,” he said, but African officials are still waiting on the details, so “we’re happy we have alternative solutions.”

Ndembi said African officials have approached at least 10 vaccine manufacturers and developers as the continent seeks to vaccinate 60% of its population of 1.3 billion people, or about 780 million people. The Africa CDC has said some 1.5 billion doses are needed for that, assuming two doses per person. It estimates the effort will cost some $10 billion.

Ndembi has said he's very optimistic that can be achieved within two years. The Africa CDC has warned that taking much longer than that risks having the virus become endemic in parts of the African continent.

In an address to South Africans on Monday night, Ramaphosa announced the country had secured 20 million vaccine doses “to be delivered mainly in the first half of the year.” He gave no further details but said “we will make further announcements as we conclude our negotiations with vaccine manufacturers.”

Africa has scrambled on multiple fronts to obtain vaccine supplies. Ramaphosa said the African Vaccine Acquisition Task Team recently created under the AU “has done tremendous work to secure vaccine doses” through what he called intensive engagement with manufacturers.

“The South African government has also been engaging directly with several vaccine manufacturers for over six months,” he said.

“Given the massive global demand for vaccines and the vastly greater purchasing power of wealthier countries, we are exploring all avenues to get as many vaccine doses as soon as possible,” Ramaphosa said.

___

Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at:

https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic

https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-vaccine

https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Health, AP World News, AP Business, AP Business - Industries, AP Business - Health Care
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Irish PM says 'perverse' morality drove unwed mothers' homes
Ireland’s prime minister says the country must “face up to the full truth of our past,” as a long-awaited report recounted the decades of harm done by church-run homes for unmarried women and their babies, where thousands of infants died
3:07PM ( 11 minutes ago )
Michigan plans to charge ex-Gov. Snyder in Flint water probe
The Associated Press has learned that former Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, his health director and other ex-officials have been told they’re being charged after a new investigation of the Flint water scandal
3:01PM ( 17 minutes ago )
Trump takes no responsibility for riot, visits Texas
President Donald Trump is taking no responsibility for his part in fomenting a violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol last week, despite his comments encouraging supporters to march on the Capitol and praise for them while they were still carrying out the assault
2:58PM ( 19 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Uganda's leader says social media shut down ahead of polls
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni says his government has shut down social media ahead of a tense election on Thursday
2:17PM ( 1 hour ago )
No choice: Dutch PM extends coronavirus lockdown by 3 weeks
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte has extended his country’s tough five-week lockdown by a further three weeks amid concerns that infection rates are not falling quickly enough and fears about the new more transmissible variant first detected in the United Kingdom
1:45PM ( 1 hour ago )
EU regulator is considering Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine
The European Medicines Agency says AstraZeneca and Oxford University have submitted an application for their COVID-19 vaccine to be licensed across the 27-nation European Union
12:35PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP World News
Sage grouse review done, but scant time for Trump's changes
The Trump administration has completed a review of plans to ease protections for a struggling bird species in seven states in the U.S. West, but there’s little time to put them into action before President-elect Joe Biden takes office
2:28PM ( 50 minutes ago )
Pandemic has imperiled plans to retrieve Titanic's radio
Fallout from the coronavirus pandemic is threatening a company’s plans to retrieve and exhibit the radio that broadcast distress calls from the sinking Titanic
2:25PM ( 52 minutes ago )
Official: Africa securing close to 300 million vaccine doses
The African Union has secured close to 300 million COVID-19 vaccine doses in the largest such agreement yet for Africa
2:23PM ( 55 minutes ago )
AP Business
GM charges up new unit to sell electric delivery vans, gear
General Motors is forming a new business unit to tap the market for delivery vehicles and equipment powered by electricity
12:15PM ( 3 hours ago )
US shifts to speed vaccinations; won't hold back 2nd doses
Barely a month into a mass vaccination campaign to stop the COVID-19 pandemic, the Trump administration has unexpectedly shifted gears to speed the delivery of shots
11:31AM ( 3 hours ago )
California turns stadiums into COVID-19 vaccination centers
California is transforming baseball stadiums and fairgrounds into mass vaccination sites as the coronavirus surge overwhelms hospitals and sets a deadly new record in the state
10:36AM ( 4 hours ago )
AP Business - Industries
The Latest: U.S. launches site to locate antibody treatment
U.S. health officials have created a website to help people find where they can get antibody drugs for COVID-19, medicines that may help prevent serious illness and hospitalization if used early enough after infection occurs
6:38PM ( 20 hours ago )
The Latest: Connecticut to open first mass vaccine site
Connecticut will open its first mass COVID-19 vaccination site at the University of Connecticut’s football stadium within the next 10 days as the state prepares to administer shots to residents ages 75 and older
6:03PM ( 21 hours ago )
The Latest: Louisiana expands vaccine delivery to elderly
Louisiana is boosting its distribution of coronavirus vaccines to the elderly
5:37PM ( 21 hours ago )
AP Business - Health Care
Irish PM says 'perverse' morality drove unwed mothers' homes
Ireland’s prime minister says the country must “face up to the full truth of our past,” as a long-awaited report recounted the decades of harm done by church-run homes for unmarried women and their babies, where thousands of infants died
3:07PM ( 11 minutes ago )
Michigan plans to charge ex-Gov. Snyder in Flint water probe
The Associated Press has learned that former Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, his health director and other ex-officials have been told they’re being charged after a new investigation of the Flint water scandal
3:01PM ( 17 minutes ago )
Trump takes no responsibility for riot, visits Texas
President Donald Trump is taking no responsibility for his part in fomenting a violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol last week, despite his comments encouraging supporters to march on the Capitol and praise for them while they were still carrying out the assault
2:58PM ( 19 minutes ago )
US shifts to speed COVID shots as cases and deaths rise
Barely a month into a mass vaccination campaign to stop the COVID-19 pandemic, the Trump administration has unexpectedly shifted gears to speed the delivery of shots
2:41PM ( 37 minutes ago )
The Latest: Pence acknowledges 'our time' coming to an end
Vice President Mike Pence has told governors on a call about the coronavirus that “our time” is coming to an end and a “new administration” is taking over
2:40PM ( 37 minutes ago )