COVID-19 vaccines from COVAX facility arrive in Peru
COVAX is a global initiative co-led by CEPI, GAVI, WHO and UNICEF to ensure equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines around the world.
Lima, 11 March 2021 - Peru received yesterday 117,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine against COVID-19 through the COVAX facility, a global alliance between CEPI, Gavi, WHO and UNICEF.
The vaccines, which arrived from Amsterdam, were received at Lima’s international airport by the President of Peru, Francisco Sagasti, who was accompanied by Igor Garafulic, UN Representative in Peru; Carlos Garzón, PAHO/WHO Representative in Peru and Ana de Mendoza, UNICEF Representative in Peru.
President Sagasti thanked the commitment of international cooperation and said, “the most important thing I want to highlight is that we have received 117,000 doses through the COVAX mechanism led by WHO, UNICEF, Gavi, CEPI and a group of international organizations, which is a multilateral effort that has allowed many countries that would not otherwise have had access to the vaccine to do so through solidarity and international cooperation”.
Igor Garafulic noted that “led by CEPI, GAVI, WHO and UNICEF, the United Nations System and its international partners have established the COVAX mechanism to ensure that all countries have access to vaccines, regardless of their economic capacity. We continue to work together with the Government to support its vaccination plan”.
Carlos Garzón, representative of PAHO/WHO, indicated that by participating in the COVAX mechanism, Peru supports equitable access, accompanies the initiative and works for a more equal world. "The vaccine acquisition process will take a few months, but the important thing is that the vaccines that the mechanism manages seek to reduce the mortality of vulnerable populations and health workers," he said.
Ana de Mendoza, UNICEF representative, said that
“the arrival of these vaccines today and others in recent weeks plants seeds of hope that we can bring this crisis to an end. The longer the pandemic lasts, the greater the impact on the most vulnerable. Through COVAX, Peru is taking a step to make sure no one is left behind and to build a better future for children and their families”.
In this way, Peru becomes the second country in the region to receive vaccines through the COVAX mechanism that is co-led by the Coalition for Innovations in Preparedness for Epidemics (CEPI); Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance and the World Health Organization (WHO) - working in partnership with UNICEF as a key implementing partner, the PAHO Revolving Fund, as well as civil society organizations, vaccine manufacturers, the World Bank and the European Union.
This first delivery is part of the total vaccine quota assigned and acquired by Peru through the COVAX mechanism.
To help ensure that the COVID-19 vaccines reach every corner of Peru, the United Nations has helped the Government of Peru to strengthen the cold chain for their safe storage. Peru has two ultra-cold freezers with a capacity of 200,000 doses, donated by PAHO / WHO, and 1,100 solar freezers, procured through UNICEF, which are ideal for remote communities. In the coming months, more than 10,000 additional cold chain units, purchased through UNICEF, will arrive in Peru.
The UN Peru Resident Coordinator together with the Representatives of PAHO/WHO and UNICEF in Peru praised the local authorities who have carefully prepared for the arrival of the vaccines and confirmed their commitment to continue supporting the ongoing vaccination process in the country.
UNICEF promotes the realization of rights and equitable opportunities for every child and adolescent, regardless of gender, ethnicity, place of residence, living condition or of any other nature.
To learn more about UNICEF's mission in Peru, visit www.unicef.org/peru.