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Shock to the System: Understanding Global Medical Supply, Shortages in COVID-19 Crisis, and How to Prepare for Future Disruptions

Since March of 2020, COVID-19 changed most aspects of life as we knew it, from our personal day-to-day activities to the systems, processes, and structures that keep the global economy interconnected and moving. This included pharmaceutical production and distribution, where anecdotal evidence suggested production problems, export bans, and trade disruption could significantly impact vital medicines access in low- and middle-income countries.

Chart showing steps from early trials to final distribution of a vaccine

Vaccine Preliminary Results: Here Is Why We Need to Exercise Caution

As vaccines complete the different phases of development (pre-clinical, phase I, phase II, phase III, regulatory review, and license), results will be published in the scientific literature and announced to the public through the media and press releases. We our currently working as part of a larger group to interview experts and give better guidance on the timelines and probabilities of success for a vaccine against COVID-19. In the meantime, it is important not to read too much into early stage results—this is why.