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Ireland to donate at least one million vaccines to Covax initiative

The Covax programme aims to supply poorer countries with vaccines from wealthy nations.

Image: Alamy Stock Photo

THE GOVERNMENT HAS announced plans to donate at least one million vaccines to low-income countries as part of the Covax programme.

The Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly and the Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney said that Ireland will donate the doses to Covax, which aims to supply poorer countries with donated vaccines from wealthy nations.

It comes as the European Union said it will donate another 200 million Covid-19 vaccines to developing countries.

Minister Donnelly said that universal and fair access to Covid-19 vaccines and treatments is a priority for Ireland and for the EU. 

“As the current phase of Ireland’s vaccination programme nears completion, it is important for Ireland to demonstrate solidarity with developing countries during this global pandemic,” the health minister said.

I am very pleased therefore to announce that Ireland will contribute one million Covid-19 vaccines to the Covax global vaccine initiative.

“This donation represents the first step in Ireland’s commitment to Covax and vaccine donation, with other possibilities for vaccine sharing to help those most in need likely to arise later in the year.”

Coveney said he is delighted to share Ireland’s surplus vaccines.

“It is a mark of Ireland’s solidarity with developing countries during this truly global crisis,” he added.

“To keep ourselves safe, we must ensure everyone is protected from Covid-19.

“This virus does not respect international borders, as we have learned.”

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Minister of State for Overseas Aid and the Diaspora Colm Brophy added: “To ensure that the vaccination rollouts in recipient countries are well-managed and well-resourced, my department has also allocated an additional three million euro to Covax before the end of the year.

“This brings Ireland’s total contribution to Covax to €7 million in 2021, part of Ireland’s contribution to Global Health of over 100 million euro.”

Covax has delivered over 276 million doses to 141 countries since March. It aims to secure enough vaccines this year for the most vulnerable 20% in every country, rich or poor.

About the author:

Céimin Burke

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