By Tamaryn Nelson, Amnesty International’s Health Advisor. Please note that this op-ed was originally published on gal-dem in mid-Dercember. Since then Canada has started a vaccination program.
The fight against COVID-19 has taken a huge leap forward this month. The historic rollout of the first vaccine is underway in the UK and the USA, while Canada and others are set to soon follow suit. For many the news represents light at the end of the tunnel as we may have the opportunity to put an end to this pandemic.
But this is a global crisis that requires a global solution. The success of any vaccine will depend on it being fairly distributed and made available first to those most at risk – regardless of where they live, who they are, or what they can afford.
We all have the right to be protected against COVID-19. But as wealthy countries hoard doses, the lifesaving potential of vaccines risks being undermined by inequality and corporate interests.