United States donates more than 1 million Johnson & Johnson single dose vaccines to Cambodia’s fight against COVID
PHNOM PENH, 30 July 2021 – Today, 450,500 doses of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine have arrived into Cambodia, donated by the United States through the COVAX Facility dose-sharing mechanism. This delivery will be followed by a further 609,600 doses that are expected to arrive on August 2nd. The J&J vaccines have WHO EUL approval and are the first single dose vaccines to be provided in Cambodia, enabling approximately a million people in Cambodia to be fully vaccinated with just a single shot.
The COVAX Facility and its partners on the ground, UNICEF and WHO, made the day’s delivery possible. COVAX is the unprecedented global mechanism that aims to accelerate the development and manufacture of safe COVID-19 vaccines, and to guarantee fair and equitable access to them as rapidly as possible. UNICEF is leading the procurement and delivery of COVID-19 vaccines through the COVAX Facility in what is the largest, most complex ground operation in the history of immunization.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the United States has provided, through USAID, more than $11 million in support to Cambodia. In addition, the U.S. is providing $4 billion to the COVAX mechanism, which has already provided more than 654,000 vaccine doses to Cambodia before today’s new arrivals.
“As part of our global vaccine efforts, we are very proud to be donating 1 million Johnson & Johnson vaccines to the people of Cambodia,” said Benjamin Wohlauer, Acting US Ambassador in Cambodia. “Equitable global access to safe and effective vaccines are among the most effective tools to fight pandemic along with mask wearing, social distancing and hand hygiene. We will continue to donate additional vaccine doses globally throughout the coming months as supply becomes available, working with U.S. vaccine manufacturers to increase vaccine supply for the rest of the world, and work with partners to expand global vaccine production and manufacturing capacity to beat this pandemic.”
As many countries face vaccine supply challenges, the COVAX dose-sharing mechanism is a rapid way to close the immediate supply gap and ensure the most vulnerable, including healthcare workers, the elderly, and those with specific vulnerabilities and living in hard-to-reach areas, are protected against COVID-19.
“COVID-19 continues to be a grave threat to Cambodia and the region, but the Royal Government of Cambodia and partners, including UNICEF, are working with determination to beat it, with vaccines being one of the most powerful tools,” said Jalaa Abdelwahab, UNICEF’s Acting Representative in Cambodia. “The Cambodian Government has made great progress in vaccinating its population, making it one of the countries with the highest vaccination rate in the region,a remarkable achievement. We greatly appreciate the leadership of the Government and generosity of the United States in donating these new doses; it takes us all one step closer to collectively defeating this pandemic.”
As well as supporting the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, UNICEF continues to support the immunization programmes of the Cambodian Government through planning, cold chain and vaccine management, demand generation, capacity building, and risk communication and community engagement with a focus on the most vulnerable women and children. Building on almost 70 years of experience in Cambodia, UNICEF is working with partners to address misinformation and ensure that local communities trusting and engaging in the overall vaccination process.
COVAX is a partnership between the World Health Organization (WHO), the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI), the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and UNICEF.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org.