COVID-19 is a global challenge that requires a global response. Together, we will lead the world out of this pandemic.
As long as the virus is spreading anywhere, it’s a threat to people everywhere, including Americans here at home. That’s why earlier this year, President Biden announced that the United States will share over 1.2 billion doses with countries around the world.
The United States is exercising diplomatic leadership to mobilize an international response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its secondary impacts while strengthening global biosecurity infrastructure to address both the current crisis and future health-related threats.
U.S. Leadership in Global Health
The United States is committed to leading the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic, becoming an arsenal of vaccines for the world, and helping every country build back better. We are reengaging the WHO, boosting vaccine confidence, supporting global distribution of safe and effective vaccines via COVAX, expanding international vaccine manufacturing capabilities, and reforming the Global Health Security Architecture. To help lead this effort, President Biden has appointed Gayle Smith as the State Department’s Coordinator for Global COVID-19 Response and Health Security.
No country faces the threat of COVID-19 alone, which is why:
- On June 10, President Biden announced that the United States will purchase and donate half a billion Pfizer vaccine doses to 92 low- and middle-income countries as well as the African Union via COVAX. The United States will continue to share doses from our domestic supply as they become available.
- On May 17, President Biden announced the United States would donate 80 million vaccine doses to the world by the end of June.
- On April 15, the United States co-hosted the “One World Protected” pledge event with Gavi which gathered leaders from across the globe, took stock of progress to date to ensure equitable and accelerated global delivery of COVID-19 vaccines, made the investment case for contributions to COVAX, and encouraged countries and the private sector to make new commitments and galvanize additional resources. Governments and the private sector made pledges to provide more than $300 million in financial contributions, millions of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine doses to be shared through COVAX, and other in-kind assistance.
The United States—through USAID—is leading the world as a top single country donor to Gavi in support of COVAX with a $2 billion contribution to Gavi in March 2021.
Framework for Global Vaccine Sharing
Our principles for sharing U.S. vaccines include achieving broad global coverage; responding to surges and other urgent situations and public health needs; and responding to as many country requests as possible, including our neighbors. We are sharing vaccines as a continuation of our decades-long work to promote global public health and security.
Our work on a vaccine supply framework is guided by a three-part approach.
First, having successfully secured enough vaccine supply for Americans, we are donating surplus U.S. vaccine supply and encouraging other countries with surplus supplies to do the same. We will continue to donate additional vaccine doses across the coming months as supply becomes available.
Second, we are working with U.S. vaccine manufacturers to significantly increase vaccine supply for the rest of the world.
Third, we are working with our international partners, investment entities, pharmaceutical companies, and other manufacturers to create the kind of global vaccine production and manufacturing capacity and capabilities that can not only help the world beat this pandemic, but also help prepare the world to respond to potential future threats.
Multilateral Approach to Beating the Pandemic
As President Biden has made clear, the United States supports multilateral approaches and will work as a partner to address global challenges. Alongside our G7+ partners, the United States and its allies have committed to providing more than 2 billion vaccines for the world — a number that will continue to rise until the COVID-19 pandemic is defeated. Drawing on our strengths and values, the United States will continue to work with other countries to make 2021 a turning point and to shape a recovery that promotes the health and prosperity of our people and planet.
In working to strengthen the WHO and support its coordinating role, we will:
- Accelerate global vaccine development and deployment
- Work with industry to increase manufacturing capacity, including through voluntary licensing
- Improve information, data, and sample sharing, including sequencing new variants
- Promote transparent and responsible practices
- Bolster vaccine confidence.
In terms of financial and technical support, the United States is the largest contributor to global health organizations. We reaffirm our support for all pillars of the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT-A), its COVAX facility, and affordable and equitable global access to vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics.
Safe and Effective Vaccines
Getting vaccinated will help keep you, your family, and your community healthy and safe. Vaccines will help bring this pandemic to an end, let us resume our normal lives, and reopen the economy. Visit vaccines.gov for more information.
The United States and our partners adhere to internationally accepted scientific standards for stringency and transparency in clinical trials, which are critical for maintaining public trust in the safety and efficacy of vaccines.
The U.S. government continues to monitor vaccine safety and efficacy even after vaccines are authorized for use by our Food and Drug Administration. We encourage the World Health Organization (WHO) and all foreign governments to rigorously assess all vaccines for safety, efficacy, and good manufacturing practices before, during, and after deployment.
U.S. COVID-19 Response: Strengthening Global Supply Chains
President Biden is determined to help the global health system build back better. The United States is committed to working with partners in the private sector and with foreign governments to strengthen a diversified and resilient global supply chain, improve key global manufacturing capacities, and close global gaps in the availability and distribution of vaccines, therapeutics, testing, and PPE.
Much of this work is guided by a series of Executive Orders and National Security Memorandum 1, released in the opening weeks of the Biden-Harris Administration, to provide U.S. leadership on global health and security.
Long-term Global Health Security Infrastructure Improvement and Reforms
Advancing global health security and disease outbreak preparedness is vital not only to protect health and safety, but also to ensure economic prosperity and defend national security interests. As we have seen, if people become sick from an infectious disease, jobs can be lost and entire communities suffer.
We are committed to strengthening global health security so that the world may build back better in order to prevent, detect, and respond to the next infectious disease outbreak.
As a founding member of the Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) in 2014, the United States has invested in training and programs to strengthen countries’ public health infrastructure.
Our commitment to global health builds on a long tradition. Over the past two decades, the United States has provided more than $140 billion in global health assistance. We are the world’s largest contributor to global health and the international response to COVID-19. Our assistance also addresses the humanitarian, economic, and social impacts of COVID-19.
Longstanding health partnerships and investments—including through the Global Health Security Agenda, President’s Malaria Initiative, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance (Gavi)—have provided the technical expertise and critical infrastructure needed to bolster preparedness, rapidly respond to COVID-19, and save lives.
We are also evaluating mechanisms that will leverage the current international political will to meaningfully and urgently improve global health security infrastructure to prevent, detect, and respond to future public health threats to include:
- Strengthening the WHO;
- Improving International Health Regulations implementation; and
- Engaging with international partners and the private sector to distribute vaccines and determine appropriate approaches for safe travel and trade.