G7 Health Ministers acknowledge that omicron variant requires taking “urgent actions”
G7- External source.
London. – The G7 Health Ministers highlighted today that the appearance of the “highly transmissible” omicron variant of the coronavirus forces us to take “urgent action” and recognize the “strategic relevance of guaranteeing access to vaccines.”
In a statement, after meeting virtually summoned by the British presidency of the group, health officials from the most developed countries praised the “exemplary work” of South Africa in detecting the new variant and alerting it. In addition, they reiterated their commitment – adopted at the summit leaders in June – to donate 1 billion vaccines to developing countries.
“The global community faces the threat of a new highly transmissible variant of covid-19, which requires urgent action,” said the G7, made up of the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy. Canada, and Japan, plus the European Union (EU).
The ministers, who will meet again in December, “also recognized the strategic importance of ensuring access to vaccines, including increasing the capacity to absorb them and preparing countries to receive and deploy them.” To do this, they stressed that they would offer “operational assistance,” advance “donation commitments,” and address “misinformation about vaccines,” as well as support research and development (R&D).
They also “reiterated their commitment” to what was agreed at the Carbis Bay summit in June, in which rich countries promised to donate one billion vaccines through the donation of surpluses or with financing to the international COVAX program and promote a system of global early warning against future pandemics and health threats.
The ministers “strongly supported the creation of an international pathogen surveillance network, within the framework of the World Health Organization” and agreed to continue sharing information on the omicron variant in the coming weeks.