WASHINGTON, D.C.— U.S. Representative Mark Pocan (WI-02) joined a group of his colleagues in calling on President Joe Biden to expand the United States’ global vaccine production and delivery for low- and middle- income countries.
Ahead of the upcoming international summit on global COVID-19 vaccine access, Rep. Pocan urged the Biden Administration to make firm commitments to expand global COVID-19 vaccine access. Pocan said that without U.S. leadership in this area, we will not be able to vaccinate the global population and end the COVID-19 pandemic.
“According to experts, 11 billion COVID-19 vaccine doses are needed to vaccinate 70% of the global population and significantly reduce the spread of the virus. So far, 5.82 billion doses have been administered globally, but less than 2% of the population living in low-income countries received even one dose. Clearly, there is an inequitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccine doses, and it is getting worse,” wrote Rep. Pocan and his colleagues. “Despite promises and pledges from some wealthy countries to donate nearly 1 billion doses to the global effort, only 15% of those donations have actually been distributed. Last week, COVAX announced that its 2021 forecast for COVID-19 doses available for distribution would be reduced by a quarter, from 1.9 billion to 1.4 billion. The United States can and should improve COVID-19 vaccine access for low- and middle-income countries and lead the entire world out of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The letter was signed by Senators Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Jeffrey Merkley (D-Ore.) and Edward Markey (D-Mass.). It was also signed by Representative Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL-8).
You can read a copy of the letter here.