World Health Organization
The World Health Organization (WHO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations responsible for international public health .The WHO Constitution states its main objective as “the attainment by all peoples of the highest possible level of health”. Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland , it has six regional offices and 150 field offices worldwide.
The WHO was established on 7 April 1948. The first meeting of the World Health Assembly (WHA), the agency’s governing body, took place on 24 July of that year. The WHO incorporated the assets, personnel, and duties of the League of Nations ‘ Health Organization and the Office International d’Hygiène Publique , including the International Classification of Diseases (ICD). Its work began in earnest in 1951 after a significant infusion of financial and technical resources.
The WHO’s mandate includes advocating for universal health care , monitoring public health risks, coordinating responses to health emergencies, and promoting health and well-being. It provides technical assistance to countries, sets international health standards, and collects data on global health issues. A publication, the World Health Report , provides assessments of worldwide health topics. The WHO also serves as a forum for discussions of health issues.
The WHO has played a leading role in several public health achievements, most notably the eradication of smallpox , the near- eradication of polio , and the development of an Ebola vaccine . Its current priorities include communicable diseases , particularly HIV/AIDS , Ebola , COVID-19 , malaria and tuberculosis ; non-communicable diseases such as heart disease and cancer; healthy diet , nutrition, and food security ; occupational health ; and substance abuse . Its World Health Assembly , the agency’s decision-making body, elects and advises an executive board made up of 34 health specialists. It selects the director-general, sets goals and priorities, and approves the budget and activities. The director-general is Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus of Ethiopia.
The WHO relies on contributions from member states (both assessed and voluntary) and private donors for funding. Its total approved budget for 2020–2021 is over $7.2 billion, of which the majority comes from voluntary contributions from member states. Contributions are assessed by a formula that includes GDP per capita. Among the largest contributors were Germany (which contributed 12.18% of the budget), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (11.65%), and the United States (7.85%).
Coalition For Epidemic Preparedness Innovations
The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) is a foundation that takes donations from public, private, philanthropic, and civil society organisations, to finance independent research projects to develop vaccines against emerging infectious diseases (EID).
CEPI is focused on the World Health Organization ‘s (WHO) ” blueprint priority diseases “, which include: the Middle East respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus ( MERS-CoV ), the Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 ( SARS-CoV-2 ), the Nipah virus , the Lassa fever virus , and the Rift Valley fever virus, as well as the Chikungunya virus and the hypothetical, unknown pathogen ” Disease X “. CEPI investment also requires “equitable access” to the vaccines during outbreaks ,  although subsequent CEPI policy changes may have compromised this criteria.
CEPI was conceived in 2015 and formally launched in 2017 at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos , Switzerland. It was co-founded and co-funded with US$460 million from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Wellcome Trust , and a consortium of nations composed of India , Germany , Japan and Norway , which the European Union (2019) and United Kingdom (2020) subsequently joined. CEPI is headquartered in Oslo , Norway
Novavax Covid-19 Vaccine
COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access, abbreviated as COVAX, is a worldwide initiative aimed at equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines directed by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance (formerly the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization, or GAVI), the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), and the World Health Organization (WHO). It is one of the three pillars of the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator , an initiative begun in April 2020 by the WHO, the European Commission , and the government of France as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic . COVAX coordinates international resources to enable low-to-middle-income countries equitable access to COVID-19 tests , therapies , and vaccines . UNICEF is the key delivery partner, leveraging its experience as the largest single vaccine buyer in the world and working on the procurement of COVID-19 vaccine doses, as well logistics, country readiness and in-country delivery.
By 19 October 2020, 184 countries had joined COVAX.
COVAX began distributing vaccines in February 2021. Though COVAX promised 100 million doses by the end of March, this goal was not reached until 6 July. By mid-August of 2021, COVAX delivered 200 million vaccine doses to nearly 140 countries instead of the 600 million doses initially projected. The continued shortage of COVID-19 vaccines delivered through COVAX is blamed on “vaccine nationalism” by richer nations, and the diversion of 400 million Oxford–AstraZeneca vaccine doses, produced under license by the Serum Institute of India (SII), for domestic use in India.
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), a merging of the William H. Gates Foundation and the Gates Learning Foundation, is an American private foundation founded by Bill Gates and Melinda French Gates . Based in Seattle, Washington , it was launched in 2000 and is reported as of 2020 to be the second largest charitable foundation in the world, holding $49.8 billion in assets. The primary stated goals of the foundation are to enhance healthcare and reduce extreme poverty across the world, and to expand educational opportunities and access to information technology in the U.S. Key individuals of the foundation include Bill Gates , Melinda French Gates , Warren Buffett , chief executive officer Mark Suzman, and Michael Larson .
The BMGF had an endowment of approximately $50 billion as of December 31, 2020. The scale of the foundation and the way it seeks to apply business techniques to giving makes it one of the leaders in venture philanthropy , though the foundation itself notes that the philanthropic role has limitations .In 2007, its founders were ranked as the second most generous philanthropists in the U.S., behind Warren Buffett. As of 2018, Bill Gates and Melinda French Gates had donated around $36 billion to the foundation. Since its founding, the foundation has endowed and supported a broad range of social, health, and education developments, including the establishment of the Gates Cambridge Scholarships at Cambridge University .