By: Nandika Chand | Last Updated July 12, 2020
Bill Gates has warned that if drugs and vaccines go to the highest bidder, instead of to the people and places where its needed the most, the world will see a longer, more unjust deadlier pandemic.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to consume lives, nations and pharma companies are racing to get a vaccine ready. This has driven concerns that wealthier nations are receiving more drugs than developing countries. According to the WHO, 21 candidate vaccines are currently in clinical trials being tested on human volunteers; three vaccines are in the third phase of trials.
The Microsoft founder said the world needs leaders to make tough decisions about distributing drugs and vaccines based on ‘equity’ and not market-driven factors. Gates said COVID-19 medication and future vaccines should be distributed to people who need them the most and not to the highest bidder. The billionaire philanthropist pointed out the battle against HIV/AIDS two decades ago. “The AIDS crisis serves as a model in making COVID-19 drugs more equally and widely available.” He also gave the example of Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
Gates said there has to be a global cooperation, a resolve to invent the tools and get them distributed where its needed the most. He emphasized that a remarkable impact can be made when nations, institutions and advocates work together.