The president of the World Bank is seeking approval for a $12 billion plan to provide funding to low-income countries to procure SARS-CoV-2 vaccines when they are available, Reuters reports.
Reuters adds that this plan is part of a wider $160 billion coronavirus aid initiative that seeks to help countries gain access to vaccines that meet safety criteria and have undergone regulatory approval. This way, it says, countries can distribute vaccines quickly to healthcare and other essential workers to head off the pandemic. David Malpass, the World Bank president, further notes, according to the Guardian, that wealthy nations have already reserved a number of vaccine doses and the agency wants to ensure other countries also have access.
"Our goal is to alter the course of the pandemic for the low- and middle-income developing countries," Malpass tells Reuters. "This is a market signal to the manufacturers that there will be financing available for the developing countries and there will be demand. We will begin asking the manufacturers to begin creating allocations for these countries."
The Guardian adds that the World Bank has previously run successful vaccination campaigns, such as for polio.