On February 18, 2021, the United States announced a $4 billion contribution to support the purchase and delivery of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines for the world’s most vulnerable and at-risk populations, including frontline health care workers.
The U.S. contribution includes an initial and immediate $2 billion to the COVAX Advance Market Commitment (AMC), which enables donor-funded access to safe and effective vaccines for 92 low- and middle-income economies. COVAX aspires to distribute enough doses to cover at least 20% of AMC country populations. COVAX AMC countries include Dominica, Grenada, Saint Lucia, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines. The United States will also take a leadership role in galvanizing further global contributions to COVAX and expanding its reach by releasing an additional $2 billion of which the first $500 million will be made available when existing donor pledges are fulfilled and initial doses are delivered to AMC countries.
Vaccines made possible through this contribution will be distributed as determined by the World Health Organization within the COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility (COVAX) framework, a multilateral mechanism which facilitates global access to COVID-19 vaccines. The U.S. $4 billion contribution is a significant step toward advancing COVAX’s goal to roll out at least 1.3 billion vaccine doses in the world’s poorest economies in 2021. The UnitedStates Agency for International Development will be the main arm of the U.S. in delivering the assistance through the Vaccine Alliance Gavi.
This contribution demonstrates the United States’ commitment to strengthening multilateral cooperation in global health and builds on decades of U.S. investments in global health. The United States has provided more than $140 billion in global health assistance over the last two decades, contributed an additional $1.6 billion to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the pandemic, and pledged $1.6 billion to immunize 300 million more children in the world against vaccine-preventable diseases, such as measles, diphtheria, yellow fever, and pneumococcal pneumonia.
However, while U.S. contributions represent a more than doubling in funding for COVAX AMC, the international community is needed to ensure that COVID-19 response activities are quickly and fully funded to reach more of the global population. Together we can protect the world’s most vulnerable from COVID-19 and end the devastating public health and economic effects of this pandemic.