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Five Countries Support GAVI COVAS AMC With $958M4 minutes read

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Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance has announced it received a total pledge of approximately $958 million from five countries in support of the Gavi COVAX AMC.

The COVX AMC is a financing mechanism that will support 92 low- and middle-income countries’ access to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines.

With the approximately $958m in commitments made by the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Italy and Sweden this week, nearly $1.7 billion has been raised for the Gavi COVAX AMC so far, thanks to contributions from other sovereign donors, the private sector, and philanthropic sources, a statement said on Friday.

The urgent fundraising asks for the COVAX AMC is $ 2billion by the end of 2020 to reserve and access 1 billion doses for AMC-eligible economies, with at least $5 billion needed in 2021 to procure doses as they come through the portfolio.

The announcements come on the heels of 76 high-income countries joining the COVAX Facility, a global effort to ensure rapid and equitable access to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines for the most vulnerable groups across the world. These 76 self-financing participants in the COVAX Facility will join the 92 low- and middle-income economies eligible to have their participation in the Facility supported by the Gavi COVAX AMC.

“Gavi is the leading funding partner for vaccination and one of the most significant funding partners for the health sector in Niger,” said His Excellency, Issoufou Mahamadou, President of the Republic of Niger.

“I would like to reiterate my support to Gavi and applaud the COVAX initiative as a way to assure universal and fair access to the COVID-19 vaccine.”

According to the statement, The United Kingdom pledged up to £ 500 million (approximately US$ 640 million) to the Gavi COVAX AMC. This commitment includes £1 in matched funding for every US$ 4 committed by others, to an amount up to £250 million. This is in addition to an earlier US$ 61 million pledged by the United Kingdom for the COVAX AMC at the Global Vaccine Summit on June 4, bringing the total contribution to US$ 701 million.

Canada pledged CAD 220 million (approximately US$ 166 million) to the Gavi COVAX AMC. This amount is in addition to the US$ 25 million pledged by Canada for the COVAX AMC at the Global Vaccine Summit on June 4, bringing the total contribution to US$ 191 million.

Germany confirmed that the EUR 100m (approximately US$ 120 million) pledged at the Global Vaccine Summit on June 4, as special funds for Gavi to combat COVID-19, will go towards the Gavi COVAX AMC.

Italy pledged EUR 20 million (approximately US$ 23 million) to the Gavi COVAX AMC. This is amount is in addition to the US$ 79 million pledged by Italy for the COVAX AMC at the Global Vaccine Summit on June 4, bringing the total contribution to US$ 102 million.

Sweden pledged SEK 100 million (approximately US$ 12 million) to the Gavi COVAX AMC.

“This type of global collaboration is exactly what the world needs in order to end the acute phase of this pandemic, and we very much appreciate the generosity of donors when their own economies are undergoing stress,” said Marie-Ange Saraka-Yao, Managing Director for Resource Mobilisation, Private Sector Partnerships & Innovative Finance at Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance.

“The pledges made this week bring us closer to the COVAX goal of making sure ability to pay is not a barrier for access to COVID-19 vaccines. We are grateful to the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Italy, Sweden and all the other COVAX AMC donors for their continued commitment to our shared vision that no one is safe from COVID-19 until the most vulnerable everywhere are safe.”

The COVAX Facility is part of COVAX, the vaccines pillar of the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator, which is co-led by the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, and the World Health Organization (WHO) – working in partnership with developed and developing country vaccine manufacturers, UNICEF, the World Bank, Civil Society Organisations and others. COVAX is the only global initiative that is working with governments and manufacturers to ensure COVID-19 vaccines are available worldwide to economies of all financial means.

As part of this effort, Gavi has recently established the Office of the COVAX Facility to oversee administration and coordination of the Facility. Aurélia Nguyen, formerly Managing Director for Vaccines and Sustainability at Gavi, has taken on the role of Managing Director of the Office of the COVAX Facility as of today, for an initial appointment term of one year. Critical decisions taken by the Gavi Board last week, including the allocation of US$ 150 million to support AMC-eligible economies’ readiness to deliver COVID-19 vaccines, will further support the COVAX vision of equitable access.

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Kenya Sees ‘Dramatic Rise’ In COVID-19 Cases – WHO

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The World Health Organization (WHO) says Kenya has witnessed what it calls a dramatic rise in new coronavirus (Covid-19) infections over the last month.

The East African country has seen a recent resurgence of new virus cases following an easing of restrictions that lasted months. The Kenyan government allowed schools to reopen partially, eased a nighttime curfew and also lifted lockdowns that had been imposed on high-risk regions including the capital, Nairobi.

The WHO says the country reported 4,594 new cases in the past week – up 51% on the previous week.

In the same period, Kenya registered the third-highest virus deaths in Africa. Its 71 deaths are only eclipsed by Ethiopia (73) and South Africa (536).

“It is just shy of its previous peak at the end of July when there were 4,700 new cases – although deaths have increased at a much lower rate (9%),” the WHO says.

Health Minister Mutahi Kagwe warned recently that the country could be headed for a second surge.

The data shows that the proportion of people testing positive has started rising – up from below 5% in mid-September to more than 10% over the past week – and this does not appear to be down to any changes in testing strategy.

The rise does follow the easing of restrictions, among them the reopening of bars, the removal of a ban on sale of alcohol in restaurants and eateries and a reduction in overnight curfew hours at the end of September.

Also, teaching in some school classes resumed in mid–October.

Over the past week, Kenya recorded the second-highest number of new cases in the WHO Africa region excluding Morocco, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Djibouti, Sudan and Somalia.

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Nigeria’s COVID-19 Deaths Hit 1,135

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Nigeria’s coronavirus (COVID-19) related deaths on Wednesday hit 1,135 after the West African country’s health agency announced three new fatalities.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) also confirmed 113 new cases of the dreaded virus in 11 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The NCDC made this known via its verified wedsite on Tuesday.

The public health agency said that the new infections bring the nation’s total number of infections to 62,224.

The data released by the agency shows that 345 new patients were successfully treated and discharged across the country.

The NCDC said that Lagos state accounts for the highest number of infections with 51 cases while 15 new cases were found in FTC, 11 cases in Plateau, eight cases each in Kaduna, Oyo and Rivers and four cases in Ogun.

Edo, Imo and Kwara reported two cases each as Delta and Kano also confirmed one case each.

According to the data, the country has tested 614,480 persons since the first confirmed case relating to the COVID-19 pandemic was announced on Feb. 27, 2020.

The NCDC said that as of Oct. 27, some 113 new confirmed cases and three deaths were recorded in the country.

“Till date, 62,224 cases have been confirmed, 57,916 cases have been discharged and 1,135 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory,” it said.

It noted that a multi-sectoral national emergency operations centre (EOC), activated at Level 3, continues to coordinate the national response activities in the country.

Meanwhile, the NCDC said that there was a currently circulating myth suggesting that masks do not work to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

It stated that masks were recommended as a simple barrier to help prevent respiratory droplets from traveling through air and onto other people when the person wearing the mask coughs, sneezes, talks, or raises the voice.

“This is called source control. That is, “my mask protects you”. COVID-19 spreads mainly among people who are in close contact with one another within about two meters.

“So, the use of masks is particularly important in settings where people are close to each other or where social distancing is difficult to maintain,” it explained.

It stated that the agency had continued to work round the clock on COVID-19 response in the country.

“Please take responsibility so we can control this outbreak in our country,” it advised.

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Nigeria Records 119 New COVID-19 Cases

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Nigeria on Monday recorded 119 new cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19), bringing the total number of infections in Nigeria to 62,111.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control made this known via its website on Monday.

The centre also recorded two COVID-19-related deaths in the last 24 hours.

The NCDC stated that Lagos reported the highest number of infections with 77 while the FCT reported 26 cases.

Others Plateau-nine; Edo-four; Oyo-two and Nasarawa-one.

The NCDC said 57,571 people have been discharged while Nigeria recorded a total of 1,132 deaths in 36 states and the FCT.

It added that so far, 612,154 people have been tested since the first confirmed case relating to the COVID-19 pandemic was announced on Feb. 27.
The agency advised Nigerians to maintain physical distance and wear masks to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spread.

“Help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases in your community. It is very important to wash your hand frequently with soap under running water.

The body advised everyone to #TakeResponsibility by ensuring hygienic practices to keep ourselves and loved ones safe and healthy.

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