Minister of Public Health HE Dr Hanan Mohammed Al Kuwari has affirmed the commitment of Qatar to continue to cooperate and provide support to all international efforts aimed at ensuring universal vaccination so that everyone enjoys equality.
Dr Al Kuwari said this while participating in a high-level meeting of the United Nations General Assembly on Saturday, to support equitable access to vaccines through remote communication technology.
In her speech, Dr Al Kuwari stressed the importance of the meeting which aims to support equitable access to effective and affordable vaccines to contain the current crisis and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.
She said that despite the challenges facing achieving universal coverage for vaccines, there is faith in the possibility of addressing these challenges if countries mobilise the necessary political will in a spirit of cooperation and multilateral international action.
She referred to the success of the vaccination programme in Qatar, where more than 87 percent of the population received at least two doses of the vaccine, and work is continuing to give more booster doses.
Dr Al Kuwari said, “While, we in Qatar, are proud of these achievements at the national level, Qatar is also keen to contribute to the replication of this achievement on a larger global scale.” She explained that Qatar, since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, has provided support to countries that suffer from a lack of resources at the bilateral level and through international organisations, to contribute to the provision of vaccines and medical supplies.
This included Qatar’s recent partnership with the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI), through which $10 million was provided to support the COVAX facility as a contribution to the purchase of 1.3 billion doses of safe and effective vaccines, with the aim of ensuring fair and equitable access to vaccines in 92 low-income countries.
She also referred to the $10 million agreement signed between Qatar and the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2021 to support the Thirteenth General Program of Work of the World Health Organization (GPW 13), as well as the initiative to accelerate the availability of tools to combat COVID-19.
The meeting, which was held under the title “Stimulating Momentum for Mass Immunization”, discussed two main topics represented in the challenges that exist in vaccine production and distribution, improving quality, improving absorptive capacity and delivery rates in low-coverage countries and ensuring predictability of supplies, in addition to innovations and solutions needed to overcome Current challenges and work towards mass vaccination.
The main objective of the meeting was to provide an opportunity for member states and other relevant stakeholders to review challenges in vaccine production and distribution and to renew the political commitment to achieve universal vaccination in the shortest possible period of time.