Monumental Moment: WHO Chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus Hails US Support For Vaccine Patent Waiver

Monumental Moment: WHO Chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus Hails US Support For Vaccine Patent Waiver

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Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has for months pleaded for such a patent waiver (File)

World Health Organization (WHO) chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Wednesday hailed the United States' support for a global waiver on patent protections for Covid-19 vaccines, describing it as a "historic decision".

The WHO chief wrote on Twitter that the move was a step towards vaccine equity, "prioritizing the well-being of all people everywhere at a critical time".

"Now let's all move together swiftly, in solidarity, building on the ingenuity and commitment of scientists who produced life-saving Covid-19 vaccines," he added.

Tedros has for months pleaded for such a patent waiver -- an idea backed by India and South Africa -- arguing this would help to ramp up production and make Covid-19 vaccines much more accessible for poorer nations.

"If not now, when?" has become a frequent refrain from the WHO chief, who has lashed out repeatedly against perceived vaccine-hoarding by richer nations.

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