UN Correspondent Society & Diplomatic Review and UNNGO PeaceeverTV Edit reports according to the UN News：WHO’s Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus speaking to reporters in Geneva today (07 Dec), Dr Tedros said that the Values Framework and Population Prioritization Roadmap provide recommendations on “who should be considered for vaccination first, and lays out the values that inform those recommendations.”
WHO’s Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, "As countries plan to roll out COVID-19 vaccines in the coming weeks and months, we urge them to prioritize vaccinating those most in need, based on the Values Framework and Population Prioritization Roadmap issued by WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization.”
He continued, “these are not easy decisions. Vaccinating health workers who are at high risk of infection will help to protect them and the health system. People at highest risk of serious disease or death as a result of age are also a high priority group because protecting them will reduce severe disease and death and take the burden off health systems."
WHO’s Assistant Director-General, Dr Mariângela Simão said, "there are very few cases where vaccines are mandatory in countries because countries have different regulations and they usually refer to vaccination in children.”
She continued, “we don't have that experience with adults so far, but we do believe that it's much better to work on information campaigns, on making the vaccine accessible to those priority groups who need to be vaccinated first, as we don't have enough vaccine next year to vaccinate the entire population.”
She added, “it will be up to countries to decide, but the position is that the way it works better is to make sure that people who are in the priority populations to be vaccinated first, that they have the right information, and that they can do an informed choice regarding getting the vaccine."
WHO’s Mike Ryan also briefed the reporters. He said, "I think the issue and the discussion we need to have amongst ourselves and with ourselves, is the issue of what is personal responsibility versus what is a requirement of law. And, what are you as an individual willing to do to protect yourself and those people around you? If I lived on a desert island, would I necessarily want to have a COVID vaccine? I don't know. But if I was going to visit my 80-year-old mother, she's not in a nursing home, but if she was, would I, if vaccine was available, would I be responsible in going in there visiting lots of older people without being vaccinated? If a vaccine was available to them.”
He added, “I think we all have to ask ourselves those questions and that's when you ask yourself those questions, you tend to come up with the right answers and then you avoid questions about law and mandatory natures of vaccines.”
Ryan also said, “I think the other thing that (Dr.) Maria (Van Kerkhove) reflected to me earlier was, you know, the reality is most people want these vaccines. This is a massive potential victory for global health. People are demanding these vaccines. People want these vaccines. They want these vaccines to be rolled out carefully and safely."
Ryan also said, "there are specific circumstances in which governments may have to require a specific mandate for vaccination. But, I think all of us who work in public health would rather avoid that as a means of getting people vaccinated.”
He continued, “I think we're much better served to present people with the data, present people with the benefits and let people make up their own minds. Obviously within reason, because there are certain circumstances, as I've alluded to, where I would believe that it would be the only responsible thing would be to be vaccinated, in future when the vaccine is fully available."
Ryan noted that "what we need now globally is not to enter the land of empty promises. In terms of supporting the ACT-Accelerator. The structure is there, the partnership is there, the means to do this allocation fairly and equitably is there. We've never had that in place previously, but what's not in place is the financing to make that happen in 2021."