WHO says it will cost £27billion to end the coronavirus pandemic worldwide

The World Health Organization (WHO) has said it will cost $35billion to end the coronavirus pandemic across the world and get vaccinations to everyone who needs one.

It also claims that if $15billion is not raised in the next three months then "we will lose the window of opportunity”.

The news comes following the inaugural meeting of the Access to Covid-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator Facilitation Council.

The ACT-Accelerator is a global collaboration aiming to accelerate the development, production, and equitable access to Covid-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines.

It was launched on April 24 by WHO with the European Commission, France and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and supported by the UN Secretary-General and multiple Heads of Government.

WHO says it has already helped ensure more than 170 countries are engaged in the new Covid-19 Vaccine Facility, with 10 candidate vaccines are under evaluation, nine of them in clinical trials, giving the largest and most diverse Covid-19 vaccine portfolio in the world.

The World Health Organization says that investing in the ACT-Accelerator’s multilateral approach increases the chance of success for all countries by giving access to a greater number of tools more quickly, as well as sharing the costs, and mitigating the risks of research and development.

But the organisation also now says that a total of US$35 billion is still needed for the ACT-Accelerator to realise its goals of producing 2bn vaccine doses, 245m treatments and 500m tests.

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.

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"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 a 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."

UN Secretary-General António Guterres, said: “We now need US$35 billion more to go from set-up to scale and impact.

"There is a real urgency in these numbers. Without an infusion of US$15 billion over the next three months, beginning immediately, we will lose the window of opportunity.”

H.E. Cyril Ramaphosa, President of South Africa, said: "It is essential that humanity should have a sense that if and when a vaccine is developed, all countries, including my own continent, Africa, should benefit and not be left behind.

"Humanity requires that a vaccine should be regarded as a public good to benefit all.

"We cannot achieve Universal Health Coverage when a Covid-19 vaccine is available only to countries that are well-resourced.”

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