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How can we help 3rd world or underprivileged (Covid vaccine)


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Is there anything we can do as primarily privileged Americans to help those who most need it get the vaccines?  So many 3rd world countries have very little of it, if any? The rich countries are getting it all. How do we make it more equitable?

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Conspiracy theories and fear of the vaccine are major hurdles right now, so one very simple thing that people who have access to the vaccine can do is to not spread rumors and false information.  Those false ideas are certainly not only being spread by Americans, but they contribute to the problem.

The ship has already sailed on wealthy countries, including the US, hoarding the vaccine so far, so probably the best thing individual Americans can do is get vaccinated ASAP so that US attention can finally turn to countries who need vaccines.  If we have to spend a long time convincing hesitant Americans to get vaccinated, it will only slow access for people in other countries.

Support COVAX. https://www.who.int/initiatives/act-accelerator/covax  COVAX vaccines have been delivered to the country I live in, allowing for the first significant round of vaccination to happen, although COVAX's base goal of 20% of countries' populations isn't anywhere near enough. See here too  https://www.unicef.org/supply/media/6176/file/UNICEF-ACTA-SFF-Mar2021.pdf

Push for US dollars to be spent on vaccines that will target populations that won't have access for a long time, and make sure they are available at zero cost to the recipients.  The earliest EOs in December regarding US vaccines actually prohibited US-sourced vaccines from going to non-citizens.  This isn't the case anymore, but even then, that restriction caused problems.  We can't limit vaccine access, even if US tax dollars pay for it.  And the main question I get asked about future vaccines here is whether it will be free.  Wealthy countries will have to fund this, and it will be worth the money.

Advocate for more US dollars to be spent on global health initiatives overall.  There have been huge improvements in global health as people work together, but there's still a long way to go.  Healthier populations will get through future pandemics better.  If enough Americans ask for US tax dollars to be spent on global health, it can happen.

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@TexasProudThank you for thinking about and being concerned for people in other countries!     Here in Colombia we are fortunate and our government purchased COVID-19 vaccines from 5 different companies. I read that Canada purchased from 7 companies.

Colombia paid for the vaccines, buying from the pharmaceutical companies that manufacture them.  Also, Colombia was the first country in Latin America to participate in COVAX.  We are getting a very small percentage of COVID-19 vaccines  because of COVAX contracts. I assume we are paying for those vaccines too and hope and assume that we are getting a discount, buying via COVAX.

Probably my Colombian Income Tax payment this year will be higher to help pay for the vaccines?

NOTE: MANY countries here in Latin America and around the world are not as fortunate as we are here in Colombia and their governments do not have the money to pay for the COVID-19 vaccines and that is where people and countries who are more fortunate can help, as you are doing. Thank you!    Lanny (TexasAbsenteeVoter)

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1 hour ago, Amira said:

Conspiracy theories and fear of the vaccine are major hurdles right now, so one very simple thing that people who have access to the vaccine can do is to not spread rumors and false information.  Those false ideas are certainly not only being spread by Americans, but they contribute to the problem.

The ship has already sailed on wealthy countries, including the US, hoarding the vaccine so far, so probably the best thing individual Americans can do is get vaccinated ASAP so that US attention can finally turn to countries who need vaccines.  If we have to spend a long time convincing hesitant Americans to get vaccinated, it will only slow access for people in other countries.

Support COVAXhttps://www.who.int/initiatives/act-accelerator/covax  COVAX vaccines have been delivered to the country I live in, allowing for the first significant round of vaccination to happen, although COVAX's base goal of 20% of countries' populations isn't anywhere near enough. See here too  https://www.unicef.org/supply/media/6176/file/UNICEF-ACTA-SFF-Mar2021.pdf

Push for US dollars to be spent on vaccines that will target populations that won't have access for a long time, and make sure they are available at zero cost to the recipients.  The earliest EOs in December regarding US vaccines actually prohibited US-sourced vaccines from going to non-citizens.  This isn't the case anymore, but even then, that restriction caused problems.  We can't limit vaccine access, even if US tax dollars pay for it.  And the main question I get asked about future vaccines here is whether it will be free.  Wealthy countries will have to fund this, and it will be worth the money.

Advocate for more US dollars to be spent on global health initiatives overall.  There have been huge improvements in global health as people work together, but there's still a long way to go.  Healthier populations will get through future pandemics better.  If enough Americans ask for US tax dollars to be spent on global health, it can happen.

What Amira said.

 

This page takes a while to load because it integrates so much inputted-daily data, so be patient.  But once it's all up, you can tool around and see, at current daily shots-into-arms rates, how long it will take different countries to get to 75% (estimated hurdle to achieve "herd" level) vaccination.

  • US:  3 months
  • Guatemala: 11 years

Globally, we're at less than 5% of the world's population. And this pandemic is global: new variants will continue to arise so long as it's circulating.  Business travel, leisure tourism, airline traffic and profits, tourist-driven destinations, hospitality sector businesses in the US and elsewhere, imported supplies / exported agricultural commodities -- OUR life will not be "normal" until the whole world conquers this thing. 

So while there's a piece of this that is about our moral imperative to "underprivileged" pockets of the world... there is also a big part of it that is about our own economic and strategic stability.

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3 hours ago, TexasProud said:

Is there anything we can do as primarily privileged Americans to help those who most need it get the vaccines?  So many 3rd world countries have very little of it, if any? The rich countries are getting it all. How do we make it more equitable?

Find organizations that work in other countries and donate to them so they have the money to supply vaccines as well.

I'd much rather fund vaccines through organizations I already support (Compassion and Sowers 4 Pastors in Honduras) and know what they do.  CoVAX sounds interesting and I'll be looking into them since they focus on vaccines.

 

When I write to my sponsored kids I am being careful to be just positive about vaccines in general, so when their families get access they will have less fear and may even have a role in encouraging parents/church workers/etc that they KNOW someone who got a vaccine and it was fine.

Edited by vonfirmath
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Canada is planning to donate its un needed vaccine.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-vaccines-covax-exc/exclusive-canada-in-talks-to-donate-extra-covid-19-vaccine-shots-to-poorer-countries-sources-idUSKBN27Y2UU

I think the best way to help developing countries get the vaccine is for us in the US and Canada(and other wealthy countries) to get our vaccines as quickly as possible so the governments can get to place of feeling comfortable donating the vaccines more quickly.  When the US is at only 20% vaccinated our government is going to want to hold on to what we have.  Once we get to 75%-80% the government will be more willing to start donating the extra supply.  If that happens in 3 months we'll be donating vaccine quicker than if if takes our country 2 years to get to there because of vaccine hesitancy. 

Make those appointments, help others get those appointments.  The faster we get vaccinated the faster we can start donating the extras.

Edited by Cnew02
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16 minutes ago, kand said:

This is an excellent idea I hadn’t thought of. I will write ASAP and let the child I sponsor know I just got vaccinated and how glad I am about it and that I’m praying that her community will have vaccines soon. She asks me in her letters how Covid is affecting us here, so I think that would be very appropriate. 

 

eta: I just went to read updates of the vaccine situation in Haiti, and that will shift my words. They haven’t given a single shot yet, and their government just turned down a shipment of 756,000 AZ doses from WHO. Until they actually have access in their country, I don’t want to say too much about how happy I am that I have been vaccinated. I will mention it and that I’m grateful, but I don’t want to feel like I’m advertising my American abundance while they have no access. Similar to the same reasons I wouldn’t send a picture if we bought a new car or house. I’ll let her know I’m praying they will have vaccines soon. 

Why would they do that? 

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Haiti has also been especially vulnerable to conspiracy theories regarding vaccines. https://www.thenewhumanitarian.org/news-feature/2021/3/16/how-haitis-political-crisis-is-fanning-vaccine-fears

Vaccine rumors have been devastating to local health care in many countries.  One of the most concerning examples is polio in Pakistan. https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(19)32101-4/fulltext

This is such a huge issue.  Individual Americans and Canadians can refuse vaccines with little personal consequence because of herd immunity and good national healthcare (although there have been local community consequences when vaccine refusal rates get high enough) but it’s devastating when there isn’t herd immunity or good local healthcare.  I am really concerned about how this will affect getting corona under control around the world. 

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1 hour ago, kand said:

This is an excellent idea I hadn’t thought of. I will write ASAP and let the child I sponsor know I just got vaccinated and how glad I am about it and that I’m praying that her community will have vaccines soon. She asks me in her letters how Covid is affecting us here, so I think that would be very appropriate. 

 

eta: I just went to read updates of the vaccine situation in Haiti, and that will shift my words. They haven’t given a single shot yet, and their government just turned down a shipment of 756,000 AZ doses from WHO. Until they actually have access in their country, I don’t want to say too much about how happy I am that I have been vaccinated. I will mention it and that I’m grateful, but I don’t want to feel like I’m advertising my American abundance while they have no access. Similar to the same reasons I wouldn’t send a picture if we bought a new car or house. I’ll let her know I’m praying they will have vaccines soon. 

Yes. That's why I'm being vague and careful. I want to be positive but not flaunting the wealth per se.

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I don't know enough about the science, but it does seem like Western nations need to use the AZ and not try to export it as the lesser option. That's just going to backfire in terms of vaccine acceptance.

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This isn't politics it's fact, so I hope it's not breaking any rules.

Our previous president negotiated contracts with the major vaccine manufacturers that make it impossible for us to donate any extra vaccine. It was called America First and is the epitomy of selfishness. We will literally have leftover vaccine doses going to waste unless those contracts can be renegotiated. 

https://www.healthleadersmedia.com/welcome-ad?toURL=/covid-19/we-are-hoarding-why-us-still-cant-donate-covid-19-vaccines-countries-need

The contracts the Trump administration signed with the vaccine manufacturers prohibit the U.S. from sharing its surplus doses with the rest of the world. According to contract language Vanity Fair has obtained, the agreements with Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, and Janssen state: “The Government may not use, or authorize the use of, any products or materials provided under this Project Agreement, unless such use occurs in the United States” or U.S. territories.

 

Edited by Lady Florida.
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9 minutes ago, Lady Florida. said:

This isn't politics it's fact, so I hope it's not breaking any rules.

Our previous president negotiated contracts with the major vaccine manufacturers that make it impossible for us to donate any extra vaccine. It was called America First and is the epitomy of selfishness. We will literally have leftover vaccine doses going to waste unless those contracts can be renegotiated. 

https://www.healthleadersmedia.com/welcome-ad?toURL=/covid-19/we-are-hoarding-why-us-still-cant-donate-covid-19-vaccines-countries-need

The contracts the Trump administration signed with the vaccine manufacturers prohibit the U.S. from sharing its surplus doses with the rest of the world. According to contract language Vanity Fair has obtained, the agreements with Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, and Janssen state: “The Government may not use, or authorize the use of, any products or materials provided under this Project Agreement, unless such use occurs in the United States” or U.S. territories.

 

At least Canada will be doing the right thing😥.  Although there must be some leeway in that, we sent several million doses of AZ to Mexico a couple of weeks ago.  

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1 hour ago, Cnew02 said:

At least Canada will be doing the right thing😥.  Although there must be some leeway in that, we sent several million doses of AZ to Mexico a couple of weeks ago.  

If we ever get what we've bought. 

You are right that we've contracted for 4x as much as we need, and plan to give away the extra.  But supply has been a serious issue - we don't actually have very much.   We do not have any domestic production.   We are at the mercy of export bans, including the US export ban @Lady Florida.  posted about upthread.  The US did send us a shipment of AstraZeneca (only because it's not approved there and would otherwise go to waste - which touches on @Farrar's point about  countries not really feeling super grateful for getting what amounts to other countries garbage.   There is some resentment here about that. And it's a loan, not a gift, we will have to pay it back - which would be fine but....having to pay for another countries waste and be thankful about it doesn't popularly appeal.)

My province is only 2% fully vaxed, and 18% have had their first shot.  We have the infrastructure in place to mass vaccinate, but we don't have enough vaccine.

Edited by wathe
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17 minutes ago, wathe said:

If we ever get what we've bought. 

You are right that we've contracted for 4x as much as we need, and plan to give away the extra.  But supply has been a serious issue - we don't actually have very much.   We do not have any domestic production.   We are at the mercy of export bans, including the US export ban @Lady Florida.  posted about upthread.  The US did send us a shipment of AstraZeneca (only because it's not approved there and would otherwise go to waste - which touches on @Farrar's point about  countries not really feeling super grateful for getting what amounts to other countries garbage.   There is some resentment here about that. And it's a loan, not a gift, we will have to pay it back - which would be fine but....having to pay for another countries waste and be thankful about it doesn't popularly appeal.)

My province is only 2% fully vaxed, and 18% have had their first shot.  We have the infrastructure in place to mass vaccinate, but we don't have enough vaccine.

That is horrible...

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4 hours ago, kand said:

Apparently they want something other than AZ. I think it might have more to do with two doses than the minute risk of a clotting event, but I still don’t know how they can turn them down when they don’t have any at all.

There are apparently MANY people, I am one of them,  who want something other than the AstraZeneca vaccine against COVID-19.   Of the 5 vaccines Colombia has purchased, I am not willing to receive AstraZeneca, because of the  many issues during the past year.

In my case, it has nothing to do with the fact that AstraZeneca requires two (2) injections.  If I can, I will get the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which requires two (2) injections. Or, the Moderna vaccine that requires two (2) injections.  Or the Janssen (J&J) vaccine which only requires one injection. In that order of preference.  In my case,  if I had to choose between the Sinovac vaccine (from China) or Astroeneca from the UK/Europe, I would select the Sinovac.

I am sad that the Colombian government could not or did not cancel their purchase of AstraZeneca vaccines.  I hope everyone here who gets it will be OK.

My belief (reading about what they have done in Canada and some other countries) is that people under the age of 60 should not receive AstraZeneca and especially not women younger than 60. 

Probably, almost everyone who receives AstraZeneca will be OK.  I don't think they want it in Europe either, but I think it is very inexpensive.

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I don’t know that we as individuals can do much. Perhaps some of the larger organizations could purchase a vaccine lot and do vaccines.

Honestly, though, the people I know in Honduras and other areas affected by the hurricanes that came through are focused on the basics—getting a roof back over their heads, buying food, and having basic necessities again. Meeting those basic needs is a way we help. 

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3 hours ago, wathe said:

You are right that we've contracted for 4x as much as we need, and plan to give away the extra.  But supply has been a serious issue - we don't actually have very much.   We do not have any domestic production.   We are at the mercy of export bans, including the US export ban @Lady Florida.  posted about upthread.  The US did send us a shipment of AstraZeneca (only because it's not approved there and would otherwise go to waste - which touches on @Farrar's point about  countries not really feeling super grateful for getting what amounts to other countries garbage.   There is some resentment here about that. And it's a loan, not a gift, we will have to pay it back - which would be fine but....having to pay for another countries waste and be thankful about it doesn't popularly appeal.)

My province is only 2% fully vaxed, and 18% have had their first shot.  We have the infrastructure in place to mass vaccinate, but we don't have enough vaccine.

I don’t understand why more countries haven’t made the effort to work toward local production capacity - it was obvious that global supply was going to be an issue.  In Australia they did but only for Astra Zeneca which now looks like a bad bet.

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32 minutes ago, Ausmumof3 said:

I don’t understand why more countries haven’t made the effort to work toward local production capacity - it was obvious that global supply was going to be an issue.  In Australia they did but only for Astra Zeneca which now looks like a bad bet.

I think it just takes a long time.  Canada has plans for a Novovax plant, but that's at least a year away.

mRNA vaccines are complicated to make.  That kind of infrastructure takes years to develop.

We had a conservative government 2006-2015 that defunded government science and research programs.  Now we are paying  for that.

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I live in a poor country, a tiny island, that's third-world. We got the vaccine before most people in developed countries. All of my friends in the U.S. were shocked. 

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Guess which small--formerly quite poor but now lower middle-income--country is in second place in the world just behind Israel by getting over 90% of its adult citizens vaccinated with a first dose just this last week (in 4 days)?

It is a country with only 37 physicians nationwide.

Spoiler

Bhutan

 

Here is a pretty good map showing the global disparities:

https://www.economist.com/coronavirus-pandemic

Bill

Edited by Spy Car
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These stories of random countries getting people vaccinated quickly are so interesting to me.  Seychelles, Chile, UAE, Israel, the one Spy Car wants people to guess about.  There aren't a lot of patterns except an usually proactive government that really pushed for vaccines.  But there are other proactive governments who haven't been able to produce the same results. 

Edited by Amira
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I read awhile ago, I think on the web site of the largest newspaper in Cali, Colombia (El Pais) that in the UK they are studying the possibility of combining the AstraZeneca vaccine against COVID-19 with the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.

The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine so far has arrivec in Colombia  in small quantities (several hundred thousand dosis in a shipment) and has been given, so far, to Medical and Health people, which I believe is correct.  I think another issue may be that there are a very limited (approximately 50?) of the super freezers available to store the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine in Colombia at this time.

A lot of the AstraZeneca vaccine has arrived and my impression is that I am not the only person here who does not want AstraZeneca.

With regard to other countries, I believe this is true:

(a) Last week I read that Chile was going to close it's borders for the month of April

(b) I remember reading that Israel was looking into the possibility of building a factory to make the vaccines in. I think that would cost appproximately one billion dollars (USD) and take 1 or 2 years to construct?  I don't know if they decided to go ahead with that idea or to drop the idea.

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Egypt started talking last summer about producing what we now know as Sinovac to distribute to Africa, and they’re apparently finalizing the deal now.  I haven’t seen any real estimates of how long it will take to start produce vaccine at any useful level, but when Egypt is one of the most populous countries in Africa, it would really help to have local production.  They’re only talking about 80 million doses annually though, and Egypt needs 150 million to get to herd immunity, plus Sinovac might only be 50% effective. 

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21 hours ago, Lanny said:

There are apparently MANY people, I am one of them,  who want something other than the AstraZeneca vaccine against COVID-19.   Of the 5 vaccines Colombia has purchased, I am not willing to receive AstraZeneca, because of the  many issues during the past year.

In my case, it has nothing to do with the fact that AstraZeneca requires two (2) injections.  If I can, I will get the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which requires two (2) injections. Or, the Moderna vaccine that requires two (2) injections.  Or the Janssen (J&J) vaccine which only requires one injection. In that order of preference.  In my case,  if I had to choose between the Sinovac vaccine (from China) or Astroeneca from the UK/Europe, I would select the Sinovac.

I am sad that the Colombian government could not or did not cancel their purchase of AstraZeneca vaccines.  I hope everyone here who gets it will be OK.

My belief (reading about what they have done in Canada and some other countries) is that people under the age of 60 should not receive AstraZeneca and especially not women younger than 60. 

Probably, almost everyone who receives AstraZeneca will be OK.  I don't think they want it in Europe either, but I think it is very inexpensive.

Just curious, why the Chinese one over Astra Zeneca? The Chinese vaccines are only about 50% effective. And I heard that Chile has rolled out a lot of vaccine, but aren’t doing as well as other countries that have vaccinated a lot, and that they have primarily used the Chinese vaccines (Sinopharm or Sinovac, I’m not sure if they use just one or both). I believe they are talking about studying combinations with one dose of one of those, plus a dose of a second, different vaccine.

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1 hour ago, Amira said:

Egypt started talking last summer about producing what we now know as Sinovac to distribute to Africa, and they’re apparently finalizing the deal now.  I haven’t seen any real estimates of how long it will take to start produce vaccine at any useful level, but when Egypt is one of the most populous countries in Africa, it would really help to have local production.  They’re only talking about 80 million doses annually though, and Egypt needs 150 million to get to herd immunity, plus Sinovac might only be 50% effective. 

Are they (Egyptian govt) talking about mostly northern Africa or any country in Africa that wants it? Either way I think their willingness to produce enough to share is commendable. I wish the U.S. had done the same. 

27 minutes ago, Penelope said:

Just curious, why the Chinese one over Astra Zeneca? The Chinese vaccines are only about 50% effective. And I heard that Chile has rolled out a lot of vaccine, but aren’t doing as well as other countries that have vaccinated a lot, and that they have primarily used the Chinese vaccines (Sinopharm or Sinovac, I’m not sure if they use just one or both). I believe they are talking about studying combinations with one dose of one of those, plus a dose of a second, different vaccine.

I can't answer for @Lanny but I think the concern among most people worried about Astra Zeneca is the problems that have plagued them. It still looks like the benefits outweigh the risks but the risks are still worth looking at. There's the possibility that it's only about 10% effective in those over 65, so it should only be given to people under that age. There was an issue with outdated data back in November. And there's the risk of a very specific type of blood clot. I'm 100% pro vaccine and even I'd have second thoughts about getting that one if it was offered to me. If it was the only option I doubt I'd say no but I'd still be wary. 

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Just shared emails with an old friend in Santiago, Chile. 

He says Chile has a lot of vaccines now, including Pfizer, AstraZeneca, and Sinovac.

Yet, he still sounds gloomy.

He says: "Hospitals overwhelmed. Still people getting very sick with variants. A total disaster."

Not the news I was hoping to hear, and I'm not certain if the strain of a year of lockdown is making my good friend unduly pessimistic (or not), but at least Chile has access to vaccines now, when that wasn't the case some months back.

Not long ago he was worried that Chile was being frozen out of the global supply chain.

Bill

 

 

 

 

 

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9 hours ago, Amira said:

These stories of random countries getting people vaccinated quickly are so interesting to me.  Seychelles, Chile, UAE, Israel, the one Spy Car wants people to guess about.  There aren't a lot of patterns except an usually proactive government that really pushed for vaccines.  But there are other proactive governments who haven't been able to produce the same results. 

In the case of Bhutan, they were the fortunate beneficiaries of the growing regional rivalry between India and China.

India supplied the country with Indian produced vaccines as part of a smart diplomatic effort.

Curiously, the vaccines were delivered to Bhutan in January, but the leading Buddhist monks there reportedly determined that it was an inauspicious moment to deliver them according to their reading of Buddhist astrology and decided they should wait until March. And that when the first shots were given they should be initially given and received by women born in the Year of the Monkey.

Despite the delay, and despite the lack of doctors and trained medical workers, last week they managed to vaccinate almost the entire adult population of the country in only 4 days through a rather amazing system of volunteer efforts.

 I may have been wrong in my PP, as the Seychelles may top Bhutan's vaccination rate. But still an amazing feat to vaccinate such a huge percentage of the population in 4 days.

Bill

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This isn’t a favorite source, but the first thing that came up about Chile and what vaccine they gave.

It says 93% of the vaccinated received Sinovac, which is 4% effective after one dose 😕 and only reaches full effectiveness of 56% two weeks after the second dose. So not knowing anything about when the timing of their vaccination campaign vs the timing and ages of who is in the hospital, there would be some questions there, but wonder if it is a matter of overwhelming spread before vaccinated had any real protection, along with the not-so-great efficacy. I know nothing about how well the Chinese vaccines protected against hospitalization and death in trials, though, or any variant data; if that data is there, that would be an important piece. 
https://www.scmp.com/news/china/science/article/3128886/chile-covid-19-vaccination-drive-adds-sinovac-efficacy-data

Edited by Penelope
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This is a correction to my previous post in this thread. Earlier I had been thinking that where I read that in the UK they are looking into mixing AstraZeneca with Pfizer/BioNTech (if I assume I assume one injection of each, several weeks apart?) was on the web site of the El Pais newspaper, in Cali, Colombia.

"Britain is currently exploring the possibility of mixing its AstraZeneca vaccine with the Pfizer vaccine."

No, it is in this article about the 2 major Chinese vaccine makers:

https://www.foxnews.com/health/chinese-vaccine-effectiveness-not-high

Colombia has I believe purchased COVID-19 vaccines from five (5) different companies: The 3 in the USA, AstraZeneca (turns out to be a bad idea and the DARPA of the DoD loaned or gave a grant for 3.2 (?) billion dollars for AstraZeneca early in 2020)

There are 2 major vaccine manufacturers in China.  Colombia purchased approximately 9 or 10 million doses of Sinovac and this past week a bunch of it arrived in Colombia.  Pfizer/BioNTech has the requirement for storage at very low temperatures and requires special freezers. Moderna is also using that same technology but I don't think Moderna requires such low temperatures during shipment and storage?

If I have a choice, I will receive one of the 3 vaccines from the USA: Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna or Janssen (J&J). Probably best for us to skip the AstraZeneca and the Sinovc vaccines.

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I'm assuming that when AZ is approved in the US (If AZ ever applies for approval), it will be used in the US.  I don't think it was ever intended to be the garbage vaccine manufactured for other countries that we're "too good" to use ourselves.  Our FDA can be notoriously slow to approve drugs and it's not unusual for other countries to have access to certain drugs long before we do because their drug approval systems are just different.  Initially, we weren't using J&J either and it wasn't because we were exporting it as garbage; it just wasn't approved yet.

I know where I live, you scramble to sign up for an appointment and you get what you get.  I also don't see vaccine hesitancy slowing things down at this point because right now the hold up is still the supply. People who want the vaccine still can't get it.  I went through a Mass Vax site last week.  The delivery machine is a work of art.  It's insanely efficient, but they simply don't have the doses.  They're opening several more in my state this month and hopefully every manufacturer will figure out how to scale up their operation.

You CAN sort of pick your vaccine by picking a specific mass vax site, and age restrictions will limit some people to only one choice, but really people are mostly taking any appointment and vaccine they can get.  Often you schedule it the night before so the whole process does your head in a bit.

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29 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

I'm assuming that when AZ is approved in the US (If AZ ever applies for approval), it will be used in the US.  I don't think it was ever intended to be the garbage vaccine manufactured for other countries that we're "too good" to use ourselves.  Our FDA can be notoriously slow to approve drugs and it's not unusual for other countries to have access to certain drugs long before we do because their drug approval systems are just different.  Initially, we weren't using J&J either and it wasn't because we were exporting it as garbage; it just wasn't approved yet.

I know where I live, you scramble to sign up for an appointment and you get what you get.  I also don't see vaccine hesitancy slowing things down at this point because right now the hold up is still the supply. People who want the vaccine still can't get it.  I went through a Mass Vax site last week.  The delivery machine is a work of art.  It's insanely efficient, but they simply don't have the doses.  They're opening several more in my state this month and hopefully every manufacturer will figure out how to scale up their operation.

You CAN sort of pick your vaccine by picking a specific mass vax site, and age restrictions will limit some people to only one choice, but really people are mostly taking any appointment and vaccine they can get.  Often you schedule it the night before so the whole process does your head in a bit.

Re the bolded:  I agree that that probably wasn't the intention, but it was the effect.  The US has a de facto export ban on covid vaccines; "America First" order signed Trump and kept in place by Biden.  The AZ that got exported to Canada and the Mexico was not manufactured with the intent for export; it was manufactured with the intent of domestic consumption.  An exception was made to the export ban because batches of AZ were literally going to expire in while sitting in US warehouses.  Some see it as the US selling to other countries what would literally otherwise have become garbage if it stayed at home, and only because it would have otherwise become garbage if it stayed at home - it feels like profiteering.  This vaccine would not have been shared if it were usable at home.  Obviously, letting it go to waste would have been worse.  But the optics of profiting from what would otherwise be waste, and sharing only because it would otherwise be garbage, aren't great either.

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OP, sorry to have derailed the thread.  Canada is not a developing nation or underprivileged, obviously.

(I've spent some time examining my own sense of entitlement here; why am I so mad about paying for other countries' cast-offs?  Developing nations are forced into this position all the time.)  Though, I suppose, there is some value in pointing out that even G8 countries are really struggling with vaccine supply.

Edited:  Thread, not threat,

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9 hours ago, Lady Florida. said:

Are they (Egyptian govt) talking about mostly northern Africa or any country in Africa that wants it? Either way I think their willingness to produce enough to share is commendable. I wish the U.S. had done the same. 

I haven't seen anything with that much detail, but usually when they talk about Africa here, they mean sub-Saharan Africa so I'd assume the focus wouldn't be on North Africa.  

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1 hour ago, wathe said:

Re the bolded:  I agree that that probably wasn't the intention, but it was the effect.  The US has a de facto export ban on covid vaccines; "America First" order signed Trump and kept in place by Biden.  The AZ that got exported to Canada and the Mexico was not manufactured with the intent for export; it was manufactured with the intent of domestic consumption.  An exception was made to the export ban because batches of AZ were literally going to expire in while sitting in US warehouses.  Some see it as the US selling to other countries what would literally otherwise have become garbage if it stayed at home, and only because it would have otherwise become garbage if it stayed at home - it feels like profiteering.  This vaccine would not have been shared if it were usable at home.  Obviously, letting it go to waste would have been worse.  But the optics of profiting from what would otherwise be waste, and sharing only because it would otherwise be garbage, aren't great either.

I totally agree with this.  While I am concerned that Canada hasn't been able to move very quickly in vaccinating its own population, it will get there. And its policies regarding the supply it does have access to are more equitable, which I definitely think is a good thing.  I've been very disappointed in how the US is handling this.

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Since it is mostly the wealthier nations flying round the world speading it getting Covid under control in their own countries will help.  

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10 hours ago, wathe said:

Re the bolded:  I agree that that probably wasn't the intention, but it was the effect.  The US has a de facto export ban on covid vaccines; "America First" order signed Trump and kept in place by Biden.  The AZ that got exported to Canada and the Mexico was not manufactured with the intent for export; it was manufactured with the intent of domestic consumption.  An exception was made to the export ban because batches of AZ were literally going to expire in while sitting in US warehouses.  Some see it as the US selling to other countries what would literally otherwise have become garbage if it stayed at home, and only because it would have otherwise become garbage if it stayed at home - it feels like profiteering.  This vaccine would not have been shared if it were usable at home.  Obviously, letting it go to waste would have been worse.  But the optics of profiting from what would otherwise be waste, and sharing only because it would otherwise be garbage, aren't great either.

As far as I know, AZ hasn't even applied for FDA approval, so it doesn't make sense that the drugs in those warehouses were ever intended for domestic use. They knew when they manufactured them that they wouldn't have FDA approval in time to use them in the US before they expired.  I'm betting the company was banking on bad press around "wasted doses" to clear the red tape in time to ship those doses to countries/customers who had already approved it's use.  (I'm just guessing.  I really don't know anything about AZ's business decisions.)  I doubt they even need the US market to find arms for every dose they could possibly make.  So now, in the eyes of the world, the US is both selfishly using more than her fair share of vaccines AND not hoarding enough of the AZ vaccine to inspire confidence?  Canada approved a drug for use, located a vaccine supply, and imported it.  This is not a selfish American cast-offs story.  

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On 4/10/2021 at 11:50 AM, kand said:

eta: I just went to read updates of the vaccine situation in Haiti, and that will shift my words. They haven’t given a single shot yet, and their government just turned down a shipment of 756,000 AZ doses from WHO. Until they actually have access in their country, I don’t want to say too much about how happy I am that I have been vaccinated. I will mention it and that I’m grateful, but I don’t want to feel like I’m advertising my American abundance while they have no access. Similar to the same reasons I wouldn’t send a picture if we bought a new car or house. I’ll let her know I’m praying they will have vaccines soon. 

It's sad that Haiti's govt turned down vaccinations. What's different though is that they were offered access and refused it. That's not the same as not being able to get it for your country. I feel sorry for the people there but the blame is on their govt not the wealthy countries of the world. I know that's not what you said. It's more that your post made me think about how it's a different situation.

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I do get a little tired of being told Americans are selfish. We share quite a bit with the world. Via our govt, private organizations, and individuals. We are not selfish. 

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52 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

  This is not a selfish American cast-offs story.  

As a non-american, I can tell you that outsiders see it differently.  It literally is a cast-offs story. 

35 minutes ago, QueenCat said:

I do get a little tired of being told Americans are selfish. We share quite a bit with the world. Via our govt, private organizations, and individuals. We are not selfish. 

I can appreciate that.  Selfish is an ugly word (and it's your word, not mine)

In this particular instance, though, the vaccine strategy/export ban is literally called "America First".  USA's domestic vaccine supply is relatively abundant, and most of the rest of the world's isn't.  People will apply value judgements to those facts.

(I do think it's objectively true that self-interest is baked into the American Way; compared to other countries there is more focus on individualism, personal liberty, individual rights, personal responsibility, pull yourself up by your own proverbial bootstraps.  I think sometimes that cultural difference can, to outsiders, look or seem like selfishness.)

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One could call it selfishness or--as I prefer--"enlightened self-interest" but to this life-long student of American foreign policy there would be no greater return on investment than to pour resources into a massive vaccine production effort that could service not only our own citizens but would aim to supply as much of the world as possible. Go big!

I find it easy to understand the frustration of those who don't have access to vaccines. Felt a little of that myself during the wait. 

On the flipside, the gratitude of those who receive vaccines is great. It is in the US national interests to have vaccines come from us. What better generator of goodwill? And that's purely from a position of enlightened self-interest.

Beyond that there are issues of ethics and morality. We should do it, because we can. We have the capacity to tool up and have the best vaccines on the market.

Think of the trillions we spend on defense. I have to think delivering a nation in need with vaccines offers a much greater return on investment (which is not a slight at our armed forces, but rather an argument that the goodwill that would flow is incalculable).

And any appearance that we are hoarding or not sharing is certain to spur resentment. How could it not?

This is an opportunity. We should seize it. It is in our national interest and it is the right thing to do as human beings living on a small planet.

Bill

 

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18 minutes ago, Spy Car said:

One could call it selfishness or--as I prefer--"enlightened self-interest" but to this life-long student of American foreign policy there would be no greater return on investment than to pour resources into a massive vaccine production effort that could service not only our own citizens but would aim to supply as much of the world as possible. Go big!

I find it easy to understand the frustration of those who don't have access to vaccines. Felt a little of that myself during the wait. 

On the flipside, the gratitude of those who receive vaccines is great. It is in the US national interests to have vaccines come from us. What better generator of goodwill? And that's purely from a position of enlightened self-interest.

Beyond that there are issues of ethics and morality. We should do it, because we can. We have the capacity to tool up and have the best vaccines on the market.

Think of the trillions we spend on defense. I have to think delivering a nation in need with vaccines offers a much greater return on investment (which is not a slight at our armed forces, but rather an argument that the goodwill that would flow is incalculable).

And any appearance that we are hoarding or not sharing is certain to spur resentment. How could it not?

This is an opportunity. We should seize it. It is in our national interest and it is the right thing to do as human beings living on a small planet.

Bill

 

Well said, indeed. I said "Yeah! Preach it!" out loud when I read this. 🤩

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7 hours ago, wathe said:

As a non-american, I can tell you that outsiders see it differently.  It literally is a cast-offs story. 

I can appreciate that.  Selfish is an ugly word (and it's your word, not mine)

In this particular instance, though, the vaccine strategy/export ban is literally called "America First".  USA's domestic vaccine supply is relatively abundant, and most of the rest of the world's isn't.  People will apply value judgements to those facts.

(I do think it's objectively true that self-interest is baked into the American Way; compared to other countries there is more focus on individualism, personal liberty, individual rights, personal responsibility, pull yourself up by your own proverbial bootstraps.  I think sometimes that cultural difference can, to outsiders, look or seem like selfishness.)

I'm all for helping other countries. Granted, I am also all for helping those in great need in the United States as well. We have homeless children and families, gang warfare in many of our cities,  and so many more societal issues that we need to address too. It just gets old to see how much Americans do and people act like we don't. In general,  not you specifically.  And contrary to popular belief, we don't have an unlimited supply of money. In fact, we owe China quite a bit of money. 

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