PRCS to co-chair global committee on Covid-19 vaccination

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Staff Report

ISLAMABAD : In another honour for the Pakistan Red Crescent Society (PRCS), Secretary General Khalid bin Majeed has been nominated as Co-Chairman of the Red Cross Red Crescent Global Committee for Covid-19 Vaccination, Advocacy, Fundraising and Resource Mobilization.

The coveted post has been bestowed upon Secretary General Khalid bin Majeed keeping in view his professional excellence, innovative approach, dedication towards the humanitarian cause and meritorious contribution to the ongoing fight against Covid-19, which has been acknowledged and appreciated even at the international level. The nomination has been made from among National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies of 194 countries who are member of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

As the global spread of Covid-19 continues to accelerate, in addition to the direct effects, the pandemic has triggered secondary effects that are threatening life-saving immunization services around the world. A report released by the WHO, UNICEF, and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, indicates that the disruption of immunization activities has put more than 80 million children under one at risk of vaccine-preventable diseases (VPDs), including polio, measles and rubella. Several models predict that the secondary impact of the pandemic can result in more lives lost from VPDs than from Covid-19.

The Red Cross Red Crescent Movement along with the United Nations has called for unity to scale up efforts to develop, test, and scale-up production of safe, effective, quality, affordable diagnostics, therapeutics, medicines and vaccines. Specifically, the governments, the private sector, international organizations and civil society have been urged to unite towards ‘a people’s vaccine’.

In the context of Covid-19, the RCRC Movement aims at supporting all phases of vaccine roll out and from development to deployment, and an equitable and affordable access of future Covid-19 vaccines.

The working group has been mandated to undertake a number of key activities to support the preparation and fair and equitable deployment of Covid-19 vaccine. Some of the key functioning areas include community engagement and risk communications to address vaccine hesitancy, assessment of bottlenecks to access and utilization of services, global advocacy and coordination support, resource mobilization and partnership engagement and collecting and sharing the best practices.