IFPMA Covid-19 Günlük Bülteni – 27 Mart

27.03.2020

Top news:

  • Globally over half a million COVID-19 cases and number are rising, including Boris Johnson, Rand Paul became the first United States Senator; as France announces it is extending its lockdown measures until 15 April. The U.S. has overtaken China as the country with the most cases in the world of the novel coronavirus, marking a new milestone in the fight against the global pandemic. Italy has not yet reached Covid-19 peak, says head of country’s health institute.
  • The African Development Bank (AAA) has raised an exceptional $3 billion in a three-year bond to help alleviate the economic and social impact the Covid-19 pandemic will have on livelihoods and Africa’s economies.
  • In Norway and Spain, the first patients will shortly be enrolled in the Solidarity Trial, which will compare the safety and effectiveness of four different drugs or drug combinations against COVID-19.
  • WTO announces that COVID-19 pandemic calls for an “unprecedented level” of international cooperation to tackle the crisis.
  • WHO to launch an official app on iOS and Android to provide information on the coronavirus pandemic and combat the spread of misinformation
  • The MSF Access Campaign ‘’no patents or profiteering on COVID-19 drugs’’ (together with over 60 civil society groups) has written a letter to the EU Commission, demanding that the various COVID-19 research funds announced by the EU be granted only on the condition that the final products are made affordable and accessible to everyone in need. 

VACCINE/ TREATMENT DEVELOPMENT

IFPMA members

Others

  • EU Commission: The European Commission to host an online pledging event. The EU Commission will hold an online pledging event to fund the development of a vaccine against COVID-19, this based on the initiatives, the global initiatives we know very well, for example CEPI (the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovation) or the Global Preparedness Monitoring Board.
  • France 24: Australians trial TB vaccine to fight coronavirus. Australian researchers are fast-tracking large-scale human testing to see if a vaccine used for decades to prevent tuberculosis can protect health workers from COVID-19.

AFFORDABILITY & ACCESS

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY

  • Reuters: Canada can ignore drug, device patents during outbreak under new law. Canada’s emergency legislation on the coronavirus crisis gives the health minister powers to circumvent patent law and ensure medical supplies, medication or vaccines can be produced locally. The ministry said the new provisions applied equally to all patented inventions. They expire on Sept. 30, 2020.

DIAGNOSTICS

GLOBAL RESPONSE

PREPAREDNESS/CONTAINMENT

  • BBC: Coronavirus: Can EU get a grip on crisis?. Along with the rest of the G20 group of wealthy countries, the EU has agreed to invest in the search for a coronavirus vaccine to be made available the world over. On the economic side, EU leaders agreed to allow governments the freedom to prop up businesses in trouble because of the coronavirus – throwing normally strict EU state aid rules out of the window. The European Commission has also temporarily suspended eurozone rules on government debt, allowing member states to spend what they need to survive the outbreak as best as they can.
  • Foreign Policy: Palestinians Brace for an Outbreak in One of the World’s Most Densely Populated Territories. For years, international organizations, Palestinian officials, and even some Israelis have warned that the Gaza Strip was verging on a humanitarian meltdown. The arrival of the coronavirus pandemic to Gaza this week might well trigger that nightmare scenario, leaving untold dead and unleashing the kind of civil unrest that could threaten Hamas’s rule in Gaza and sow chaos at the border with Israel

HEALTH SYSTEM CAPACITY

  • DW: Coronavirus: German doctors lay down life-or-death guidelines. The COVID-19 pandemic could lead to an acute shortage of intensive care beds in hospitals around the world. German doctors have now come up with guidelines on how to prioritize treatment.
  • Reuters: Coronavirus rages on, putting strain on U.S. doctors, nurses. U.S. doctors and nurses on the front lines of the coronavirus outbreak came under increasing stress on Friday as the number of cases skyrocketed and hospital staff were forced to ration care for an overwhelming number of patients.
  • Politico EU: EU countries consider sharing health professionals to fight coronavirus. EU countries could share health professionals specialized in intensive care to support each other in fighting the coronavirus pandemic. The idea was discussed at a Wednesday conference call of national public health officials in the Health Security Committee, which is convened by the European Commission.
  • The New York Times: For France, Coronavirus Tests a Vaunted Health Care System. The country goes into the battle with the contagion better prepared than most. Even so, a doubling of cases every four days has the structure creaking and straining.

SUPPLY

  • VOX: The next coronavirus crisis will be a shortage of doctors and nurses. With the number of confirmed Covid-19 cases in the US expected to soon surpass anywhere else in the world, the medical workforce is more strained than ever. Doctors and nurses are reporting gear shortages, lax protocols, and a high level of stress in their workplaces — with the worst still to come
  • Reuters: Spain extends coronavirus lockdown, in ‘war’ to buy medical supplies. Spain extended its coronavirus lockdown on Thursday and said it was fighting a “real war” over medical supplies to contain the world’s second-highest virus death toll, turning to China for many critical products, where officials reported fraud and massive price increases.

COVID-19: FOCUS ON AFRICA

  • AFDB: African Development Bank launches record breaking $3 billion “Fight COVID-19” Social Bond. The African Development Bank (AAA) has raised an exceptional $3 billion in a three-year bond to help alleviate the economic and social impact the Covid-19 pandemic will have on livelihoods and Africa’s economies. The Fight Covid-19 Social bond, with a three-year maturity, garnered interest from central banks and official institutions, bank treasuries, and asset managers including Socially Responsible Investors, with bids exceeding $4.6 billion. This is the largest Social Bond ever launched in international capital markets to date
  • Foreign Policy: Africa Is Bracing for a Head-On Collision With Coronavirus. Now that almost all of Africa’s 54 countries are reporting cases of the new coronavirus, one thing is certain: The pandemic will have drastic consequences in Africa, especially in the many countries that still have poor public health infrastructure and weak social welfare systems. For African economies, the shock will result in a drastic loss of revenues and slower economic growth. However, just as it survived Ebola, the continent will recover well from the coronavirus crisis—if its leaders act boldly now and the international community provides help where it is urgently needed
  • Reuters: Africa’s window to contain coronavirus narrowing -WHO. “It has been a very dramatic evolution,” Matshidiso Moeti, the WHO Africa head, told a media teleconference.  Governments across the region needed to invest their efforts in aggressively tracing all those people who have been in contact with imported cases, in order to isolate them and prevent transmission of the disease locally.
  • Africa News: Three Things the G20 must do to support Africa in COVID-19 Pandemic. According to United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), as a part of preparing for the worst effects of COVID-19, G20 leaders should support and encourage open trade corridors for pharmaceuticals and other health supplies; deliver an immediate emergency economic stimulus (US$100 billion) to African governments; and implement emergency measures to protect 30 million jobs immediately at risk across the continent.

WHO – Daily COVID-19 update, 27 March

Full statement by Dr Tedros here

  • I thank the G20 countries for their commitment to fight the pandemic, safeguard the global economy, address international trade disruptions and enhance global cooperation.
  • Earlier today, we held a briefing with around 50 Ministers of Health from around the world at which China, Japan, the Republic of Korea and Singapore shared their experiences and the lessons they have learned.
  • The chronic global shortage of personal protective equipment is now one of the most urgent threats to our collective ability to save lives.
  • The English version of our WhatsApp Health Alert now has more than 12 million users globally, and the Arabic, French and Spanish versions were launched today. More languages will be added, including Bangla, Chinese, Hindi, Kurdish, Portuguese, Russian, Somali, Urdu, Swahili and more.
  • Today we are delighted to announce that in Norway and Spain, the first patients will shortly be enrolled in the Solidarity Trial, which will compare the safety and effectiveness of four different drugs or drug combinations against COVID-19.
  • WHO EMRO: Statement by the Regional Director Dr Ahmed Al-Mandhari on COVID-19 in the Eastern Mediterranean Region
    • 21 out of 22 countries in the Eastern Mediterranean region are now reporting cases of COVID-19, including new reports of 5 confirmed cases in Syria and one confirmed case Libya
    • As the virus continues to spread across the region, reaching the most vulnerable and in-need becomes a critical priority. Access to basic health services, especially for refugees, displaced populations and migrants, is of paramount importance to rights-based health systems and global health security.
  • WHO to launch an official app on iOS and Android to provide information on the coronavirus pandemic and combat the spread of misinformation