As India’s covid-19 crisis continues to rise with daily deaths from the virus on the increase, the international scheme to ensure equal access to at least 140 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccines is now reportedly short as a result of the devastating situation in India.
The Serum Institute of India (SII), the largest single supplier to the Covax scheme, has made none of its planned shipments since exports were suspended in March.
It is against this backdrop that Unicef is now urging leaders of G7 nations and EU states to share their doses in other to reduce the burden.
The G7 nations are due to meet in the UK next month.
According to Unicef the data it has commissioned suggests that together the countries could donate around 153 million doses, while still meeting their commitments to vaccinate their own populations.
The SII was due to supply around half of the two billion vaccines for Covax this year but there were no shipments for March, April or May. The shortfall is expected to rise to 190 million doses by the end of June.
“Unfortunately, we’re in a situation where we just don’t know when the next set of doses will materialise,” said Gian Gandhi, Unicef’s Covax co-ordinator for supply.
India on Monday reported 281,386 new coronavirus infections over the last 24 hours, while deaths rose by 4,106
The Indian health ministry data showed that the South Asian nation’s total case load is currently at 24.97 million with the death toll at 274,390.