In an open editorial published in the weekly newspaper 'Le Journal du Dimanche', Philippe Duneton (interim executive director of Unitaid) and Paul Schreier (director of operations of the Wellcome Trust) called on governments to take action and support the most fragile countries in accessing COVID-19 treatments and vaccines.
Both representatives emphasized the need to support Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT-A) while the richest countries currently are securing agreements with pharmaceutical companies to secure tests, treatments, and vaccines for their own populations.
Duneton and Schreier advocated for additional funding for COVID-19 treatments while pointing out that US$300 million had been pledged compared to the US$7.2 billion urgently needed.
They noted that despite the EU efforts to mobilize funding for ACT-A, from the US$16.0 billion pledged, funding has not been disbursed yet and needs to be followed through on.
The authors concluded by indicating that from the US$7.2 billion needed to fund the 'therapeutics pillar' of ACT-A (led by Unitaid and Wellcome to accelerate the development of and fair access to treatments), US$4.0 billion should be secured within the next two months, and they called on donors to urgently take action.