The World Health Organization (WHO) said that six months after first sounding the international alarm over Covid-19, the United Nations is now intensely guiding global vaccine candidates through the necessary trials and guaranteeing rapid, fair and equitable access to them for all countries.
As the global infection rate surpasses the 20-million mark, various countries are working hard to trial and test possible vaccines for the deadly virus that has claimed more than 758 000 lives worldwide.
According to a statement issued by the United Nations, WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that to move forward the best bet was to do it together.
He said the Access to Covid-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator, launched in April, had shown results, with nine vaccine candidates in the COVAX portfolio now advancing through phase 2 or 3 trials.
Meanwhile, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has estimated that the coronavirus pandemic is costing US$375-billion a month and predicts a US$12-trillion cumulative loss to the global economy over two years.
Furthermore, the G-20 group of leading economies has mobilised more than US$10-trillion in fiscal stimulus to treat and mitigate the consequences of the pandemic – three and a half times what the world dispensed to address the global financial crisis of 2008, said the report.
On Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that Russia had become the first country to grant regulatory approval to a Covid-19 vaccine, which showed "stable immunity" against the novel coronavirus, according to Al Jazeera.
The prospective vaccine has been met with much skepticism from all corners about its efficacy and safety, especially after being through just two months of human testing.