Poorer countries will most likely “bear the brunt of hundreds of thousands of needless deaths” from inequalities in access to COVID-19 vaccines.
This dire warning was given by the Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland in a video address to the High-Level Segment at the 46th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva today.
More than 130 high-level dignitaries, including heads of state, foreign ministers and heads of international organisations, spoke during the High-Level Segment.
The Commonwealth secretary-general said, “COVID-19 has shone a harsh light on health inequalities within and between countries. Nowhere is this more evident than in access to vaccines.”
“Although vaccines are a vital lifeline, they remain out of the grasp of far too many. Crucially, it means that citizens of the poorest nations may bear the brunt of hundreds of thousands of needless deaths.
“We must not allow this. Leaders of our world must come together to ensure that this does not happen,” Scotland said.
She also warned inequitable vaccine access could derail the global economic recovery and make wealthier nations lose money.