President Joe Biden said Wednesday the United States will donate an additional 500 million Pfizer vaccine doses to other nations around the world. Biden made the pledge during a virtual global vaccine summit of world leaders.
President Joe Biden: “And it brings our total commitment of donated vaccines to over 1.1 billion vaccines to be donated. Put another way, for every one shot we’ve administered to date in America, we have now committed to do three shots to the rest of the world.”
Biden called on wealthy nations to vaccinate 70% of the world’s 8 billion people within the next year. Critics say Biden’s commitments fall far short of what’s needed. The vaccine summit’s goals make no mention of a push, led by India and South Africa, to waive intellectual property rights on vaccines and to force pharmaceutical companies to transfer technology to vaccine makers in the Global South. In a statement, the director of Public Citizen’s Access to Medicines Program said, “Ending the pandemic is a choice. Leaders at today’s summit have yet to make that choice. The White House still has not mobilized all its resources to expand vaccine manufacturing and protect millions more lives that may be lost.”