The President’s Administration Joe Biden has cut its target for overseas vaccine donations this year, modifying a contract with Pfizer Inc. in what would be the latest sign that global demand for vaccines has collapsed.
Under the revised agreement, a total of 600 million doses from Pfizer they will be available to the United States by the end of the year, giving the administration more time to find countries that want them. Pfizer had originally agreed to sell 1 billion vaccines at cost this month.
More than 450 million doses of Pfizer have been donated so far.
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Biden had doubled Pfizer’s vaccine order to 1,000 million a year ago in order to donate them abroad and address early inequalities in access to vaccines. But falling demand meant the US would not have been able to deliver those vaccines.
Under the revised terms, Pfizer will deliver 600 million doses for donation by the end of this year and the Government you have the option to order more vaccines, up to the remaining 400 million dosesaccording to a US official who spoke on condition of anonymity.
The US said it is working closely with Covax and other nations to distribute as many doses as possiblesaid the official.
Pfizer said it was committed to meeting the 1 billion-dose order. He confirmed that he has enough supply to meet the order, but has agreed to change the schedule.
None of the 600 million will expire before the end of the year and much of it will be available until the spring, the US official said.
It’s unclear what financial terms, if any, were changed. The original agreement was for what Pfizer called a “price without profit”. A US government document obtained by Bloomberg established the price of the 1,000 million vaccines in $6.9 billion.
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The terms of the original deal were changed once before, when the US said it would work with Pfizer to ship pediatric doses as the demand for adult doses decreased. The US said in April there was an opportunity to provide 100 million or more pediatric doses abroad; up to this month, has sent 23 million pediatric doses to 14 countriessaid the US official. More pediatric doses are expected to ship this fall, the official said.
Biden promised to donate a total of 1.2 billion doses. So far, the US has shipped about 622 million, according to State Department data, and shipments are slowing.
The effort is also hampered by a continuing funding shortfall. The Administration’s requests to Congress for more money for its Covid response, including programs to boost acceptance and remove barriers abroad, have so far been rejected.
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