All African countries now have coronavirus lab testing capacity - World Health Organization chief

All African countries now have coronavirus lab testing capacity - World Health Organization chief

World Health Organisation Director General Tedros Adhanom says he expects the number of coronavirus cases around the world, now at about 9.3 million, to reach 10 million next week. "And therefore this virus could go on and on", said Dr Swaminathan. "We never had a vaccine for a coronavirus".

Soumya Swaminathan, the WHO's chief scientist said that Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine candidate was also "not far behind" Astrazeneca's, among more than 200 candidates, 15 of which have entered clinical trials.

"Hoping that there will be a vaccine, the estimate is we may have a vaccine within one year". Once the pandemic was over, Dr Tedros told the committee, the world should not return to its previous state, but build a "new normal" that would be fairer, greener and help prevent climate change.

Nkengasong suggested a key step would be for Africa to partner with the GAVI vaccines alliance which has raised $2 billion from global donors for an Advanced Market Commitment to buy future COVID-19 vaccines for poor countries. Earlier on Wednesday, China's inactivated COVID-19 vaccine candidate has started its phase-3 clinical trial globally in the United Arab Emirates, according to the vaccine developer China National Biotec Group (CNBG).

Currently, there are at least four vaccines in clinical trials in the US, UK and Australia. If researchers can fulfill their goals and successfully deliver vaccines in the coming months, supplies are likely to be limited, making it hard to immunize global populations and halt the virus's spread. Indeed, the vast majority of vaccines in early development fail, ' the World Health Organization noted in a document about COVAX.

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There are now over 100 Covid-19 vaccine candidates in various stages of development.

To address this obstacle, COVAX is aimed at pooling financial and scientific resources, making it possible to hedge the risk of backing an unsuccessful candidate, and ensuring that lower-income countries receive equal access to successful vaccines.

"The total cost of the ACT-Accelerator's work is less than a tenth of what the International Monetary Fund estimates the global economy is losing every month due to the pandemic". This increases the chances of success and allows the vaccines that are successful to be'.

Swaminathan, speaking to a news briefing, called for considering collaborating on COVID-19 vaccine trials, similar to the WHO's ongoing Solidarity trial for drugs.

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