If there is one person who has contributed selflessly towards COVID-19 medical efforts, Bill Gates‘ name comes near the top of the list, if not the very top.
Bill Gates has been offering funds left, right, and center to contain the spreading of the novel coronavirus, whether it is testing kits or vaccine development. And now, he has announced that he will offer $150 million to bring down the prices of COVID-19 vaccines as low as $3 per dose.
Bill Gates made this announcement on Friday while revealing that it’ll be offering the amount to Serum Institute India to produce 100 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine for a price of just $3 each. This donation will enable poor nations around the world to receive the vaccines when they’re fit for use, to help save lives.
Stopping COVID-19 in poor nations
Gates has been primarily stressing on the effects on the lives of people living in poor or low-income nations. He has expressed concerns that while rich countries might be able to slip through the cracks of the pandemic fine, the devastation will be the most catastrophic for people in poor nations.
In a recent interview with Bloomberg, he revealed that he’s focusing on the development of vaccines that would be affordably priced for a developing world while eyeing ones developed by AstraZeneca and Novavax. In his words, they’re the ones to be the most cost-effective.
The $150 million is essential to set a maximum price for the sale of these vaccines and Serum has already announced that it will be manufacturing and distributing the vaccines for as low as $3 not only to India but other developing/ underdeveloped countries. The Oxford vaccine will be sold in India as Covishield and it has already commenced its final trials in India.
Before the announcement on Friday, Gates had already promised $100 million to Gavi for purchasing and distributing of COVID-19 vaccines. Moreover, in June, Gates pledged to offer $1.6 billion over the next five years to expand the distribution of vaccines further. As per a Recode report, Gates has pledged around $500 million in total in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.