September 23, 2021
President Biden’s commitment to release an additional 500 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to low- and lower-middle income countries is very welcome news. At Jhpiego, we know that no one is safe until we are all safe, and that a pandemic—global by definition—requires a global response. This week’s pledge is an important step toward achieving vaccine equity and ending the COVID-19 health crisis.
For nearly 50 years, Jhpiego has supported equitable access to preventative, diagnostic, care and treatment interventions. This work is rooted in a simple, unshakable belief: where a person lives should never determine if they live. Since the pandemic began, we’ve worked across our 40 countries to help governments respond to COVID-19 through a multi-pronged approach of education, preparedness training and vaccine mobilization. Our focus is always to help ensure no communities are left behind, especially the poorest.
This work does more than help the countries we serve; it helps the United States too. The last year has shown the world that infectious diseases don’t stop at borders. An emerging threat half a world away can quickly be at your shore. Investments in health infrastructure, equipment and supplies—and the health workforce, first and foremost—are investments in our global health security. Our own safety requires having robust healthcare systems across the globe so that diseases can be prevented, promptly diagnosed and managed before outbreaks spread.
Jhpiego stands with President Biden in understanding the only way to save lives and livelihoods here at home is to defeat the virus everywhere.