Coronavirus Global Response: WHO and Commission launch the Facilitation Council to strengthen global collaboration

Brian McGowan, Unsplash

This article is brought to you in association with the European Commission.


Today, the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, and the Director General of the WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, launched and co-hosted the first meeting of the High Level Facilitation Council, leading the work of the global collaborative framework Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (the ACT-A) to speed up the development and deployment of vaccines, tests and treatments against COVID-19, as well as to improve health systems.

The objectives of the first Council meeting was to align the plan for ACT-Accelerator as a key global solution to end the crisis and restore health systems and global growth, concur on the economic rationale and investment case for fully financing the ACT-Accelerator, and mobilise political leadership and international support for global equitable allocation.

Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, said: “Today’s launch of the Facilitation Council brings us closer to our global goal: access to coronavirus vaccines, tests and treatments for everyone who needs them, anywhere. The EU will use all its convening power to help keep the world united against coronavirus. With the chairmanship of Norway and South Africa representing the global North and South, and the expertise of the WHO and our international partners, no country or region will be left behind in this fight.

Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, said: “Nearly 5,000 lives are lost each day due to COVID-19 and the global economy is expected to contract by trillions of dollars this year. The case for investing to end the pandemic has never been stronger. The ACT Accelerator is the best way to ensure equitable access to vaccines, diagnostics and therapeutics, but at present is facing financing gap of US$35 billion. Fully financing the ACT Accelerator would shorten the pandemic and pay back this investment rapidly as the global economy recovers.”

Stella Kyriakides, Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, said: “The only way to defeat COVID-19 is together, globally. The only way forward is solidarity, responsibility and global cooperation. Today, we step up our global leadership to accelerate the development and equitable distribution of vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics. The Facilitation Council will play an instrumental role in delivering on this goal.

During its first meeting, the Council has adopted a political statement highlighting global collaboration as key to defeat the virus. It stresses the importance of testing, treatment, vaccination and improved health systems to overcome the pandemic. The statement also mentions the progress made and call for additional resources to deliver on the mission.

The Facilitation Council is composed by governments and non-governmental partners (BMGF, Wellcome Trust). It is co-chaired by Norway and South Africa, achieving geographical balance. The Council build on what the ACT-A has achieved in only four month, such as more than 200 vaccine candidates, 1700 clinical trials, and 80 diagnostics being followed, as well as 100 countries surveyed to identify capacity gaps.

Next steps

Final comments on investment case and ACT-A Plan will be forthcoming on 17 September and then the ACT-A high-level event at UNGA will take place on 30 September.

Between 15-30 September, there will be UNGA and G20 meetings and this will act to amplify the call to world leaders. Between 12-18 October, World Bank / IMF Annual meetings will take place to explore the scale of economic challenge and initial commitments. From November to March 2021, the G20 Summit and other related meetings will react upon the series of commitments.

Ultimately, the ACT-A Advocacy Campaign aims to address major political challenges and secure the more than €29 billion (US$35 billion) financing needs.

Background

Launched at the end of April 2020, the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator brings together governments, scientists, businesses, civil society, and philanthropists and global health organizations (the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, CEPI, FIND, Gavi, The Global Fund, Unitaid, Wellcome, the WHO, the World Bank and Global Financing Facility). It intends to accelerate the development of universally accessible vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics, and the improvement of the necessary health systems. Knowledge and data sharing are key. The ACT will be in place for 2 years (renewable). No new physical structure will be established, but use will be made of the expertise of existing institutions and partners.

Three partnerships on vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics define the strategy, identify the resources needed and set the accountability rules. They bring together industry, research, foundations, regulators and international organisations, following a value chain approach, from research to manufacturing and deployment. These partnerships work as autonomously as possible and are supported by a group of governmental and private non-profit partners.

ACT-A’s goal is to protect health systems and restore societies and economies by accelerating development, equitable allocation and scaled up delivery of 2 billion doses of vaccines by the end of 2021, 245 million courses of therapeutics by mid-2021, and 500 million tests by mid-2021.

The European Commission is committed in a global solution to the pandemic. This is why it has raised almost €16 billion since 4 May 2020 under the Coronavirus Global Response, the global action for universal access to tests, treatments and vaccines against coronavirus and for the global recovery.

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

A staggering one-in-three women, experience physical, sexual abuse

Eurozone retail sales fall shows recession

Member States and Commission to work together to boost artificial intelligence “made in Europe”

The 28 EU leaders don’t touch the thorny issues

Future Forces Forum: Prague will be hosting the most important project in the field of Defence and Security

This start-up has developed a way for businesses to quickly compost food waste

EU seems to fail its moderate migration promises postponing them for end 2015

Globalization is changing. Here’s how your business can adapt

11 innovations protecting life below water – and above it

6 ways to future-proof universities

In 2019, ‘reasons for hope’ in a world still on ‘red alert’: UN chief Guterres

How to make your business thrive by doing good

North Korean families facing deep ‘hunger crisis’ after worst harvest in 10 years, UN food assessment shows

A day in the life of a Rohingya refugee

Human rights ‘core to sustainable development’: deputy UN chief

It will take a lot more than free menstrual pads to end period poverty

Rule of law: MEPs travel to Malta to meet with government, NGOs and journalists

Does research make sense any more? The dire need for new ways to measure success

In Rome you can swap plastic bottles for metro tickets

Latest Coronavirus (Covid-19) briefing from the World Health Organisation – key takeaways

Why good cybersecurity in business is everyone’s responsibility

Google’s hot summer never ends: EC to launch ANOTHER antitrust inquiry against the American giant

Supply chains have been upended. Here’s how to make them more resilient

One Day in Beijing

European Youth Forum celebrates 20 years of fighting for youth rights

Few countries are pricing carbon high enough to meet climate targets

How to save the world’s forests with carbon credits

Why Obama asks approval from Congress to bomb Syria?

A money laundering case on Vatican Bank’s road to renovation

Reject passivity and embrace ‘responsibility for our future,’ Lithuania’s President tells UN Assembly

Rapid growth in China post-COVID makes it ripe for investment

The European Parliament wants to stay in one place

A day in the life of a Venezuelan migrant in Boa Vista, Brazil

EU food watchdog: more transparency, better risk prevention

Destroying nuclear waste to create clean energy? It can be done

The European Union and the United States reach an agreement on imports of hormone-free beef

Preparing for developing countries the ‘Greek cure’

Iran: BBC and other broadcast journalists harassed; families threatened – UN experts

Mountains matter, especially if you’re young, UN declares

Coronavirus: Commission holds first meeting of EU COVID-19 national scientific advice platform

The European Parliament floating over the South China Sea

Turkey presents a new strategy for EU accession but foreign policy could be the lucky card

European Border and Coast Guard: Council adopts revised regulation

UN urges ‘restraint’ in Bangladesh’s post-presidential election violence

10 reasons why today’s cyber leaders are tomorrow’s world leaders

For video game addiction, now read official ‘gaming disorder’: World Health Organization

Around 23 million boys have married before reaching 15; ‘we can end this violation’ says UNICEF chief

Humanitarian aid: EU allocates €54.5 million to Africa’s Great Lakes region

Ending use of chemical weapons in Syria: ‘still work to be done’, says UN disarmament chief

Can cybersecurity offer value for money?

These are India’s cleanest cities

COVID-19 vaccine campaigns: how far are the anti-vaccine movements going online? How can pro-vaxxers be part of their change?

EU-US trade agreement talks to be affected by American bugs

Health challenges need predictable healthcare investment policies. Japan’s example shows why

These airports are now opening their doors to non-fliers

3 pressing urban problems Indian cities must solve in the post-COVID recovery

Electronic cigarettes: is it really a safe alternative to smoking?

Cutting money transfer fees could unlock $15bn for developing countries. Here’s how

Cape Town almost ran out of water. Here’s how it averted the crisis

The world’s supercomputers joined forces against COVID-19 – why such collaborations are critical for tackling future emergencies

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s