UPS Healthcare, The UPS Foundation make commitment to facilitate global Covid-19 vaccine delivery
UPS, The UPS Foundation and UPS Healthcare are moving quickly to support an equitable delivery programme and sustainable global supply chain of Covid-19 vaccines. UPS, in collaboration with COVAX, Gavi, the vaccine alliance and CARE will initially facilitate the delivery of 20 million doses for countries that have not had sufficient access to vaccines, including top priority groups like healthcare workers.
“We believe that we have the ability – and responsibility – to facilitate and accelerate equitable Covid-19 vaccine delivery around the world,” said Scott Price, president UPS International. Price added, “UPS continues to build and inspire action across a network of global public-private partnerships that will ensure vaccines move more efficiently and equitably. Our work focuses on countries with limited resources and constrained supply chains and infrastructures. The goal is simple and our commitment is unwavering – moving our world forward by delivering what matters.”
The latest global vaccination rate is approximately six million doses per day. According to several studies, at that rate it would take an estimated 5.4 years to cover 75 percent of the global population with a two dose vaccine. The role of public-private partnerships is a vital component in building global solutions for global challenges, such as the pandemic, and the needed access to vaccines to fight it.
Global success hinges upon bringing together and mobilising the right partnerships. Helping to establish and fuel these efforts, UPS Healthcare and The UPS Foundation will provide transportation solutions that leverage UPS cold-chain technology, dedicate ultra-low temperature freezer donations necessary to maintain vaccine dose viability at the correct temperature in varying environments. They will also commit UPS loaned executives to provide logistics expertise and coordination with vaccine manufacturers and NGO partners to manage and streamline deliveries. This initial level of support from The UPS Foundation is more than $3 million in contributions to their global partners. This capacity building effort is made up of a $2 million grant directed to Gavi who is matching the grant to bring it to $4 million. With the addition of $1 million of in-kind support, The UPS Foundation is providing transportation, donating cold-chain capacity in the form of freezers and lending technical expertise to partners in need.
This comprehensive level of support amounts to more than $5 million in support of equitable vaccine distribution and health systems strengthening efforts across Gavi-supported countries
“With supply limited for the foreseeable future, Covid-19 vaccines are arguably the world’s most precious commodity this year,” said Dr. Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi. Berkley added, “With every dose being so important, it is critical to ensure that our partner countries have the necessary support and tools to deliver vaccines effectively and efficiently to those who need them. This new support builds on the long-standing partnership between Gavi and the UPS Foundation, which is focused on ensuring that every child in Gavi-supported countries receives lifesaving vaccines.”
The UPS Foundation is also providing support for CARE’s Fast+Fair initiative, which is focused on equitable distribution of Covid-19 vaccine to at-risk groups including healthcare workers, caregivers and refugees in 11 initial countries including Bangladesh, Benin, Democratic Republic of Congo, India, and South Sudan.
“We are interdependent as a global community -- no one is safe until everyone is safe,” said Nikki Clifton, president of The UPS Foundation. Clifton added, “Now is the time to link our arms around the world. Now is the time to deliver vaccines – and hope – to everyone, regardless of wealth or location.”
“Continued collaboration with public-private partnerships and ongoing capacity building remain vital to ensuring that at-risk groups are protected,” said Rachid Fergati, managing director Middle East and Indian subcontinent, UPS. Fergati added, “In addition to our work with Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, The UPS Foundation’s support for CARE helps facilitate vaccine distribution to healthcare workers and care givers, especially in India which has launched one of the world’s biggest vaccination drives. UPS is moving the world forward by delivering what matters - and, here, that is equitable distribution of this vaccine.”
Collectively, these public-private efforts, such as the one in Ghana, are designed to ensure Covid-19 vaccines begin flowing quickly to countries in dire need. Through UPS and partner support, more than 10 million people in countries across Africa, Asia, Europe and South America will receive the Covid-19 vaccine in the first wave of vaccine distribution.