CGD Policy Blogs
The essence of an advance market commitment is that sponsors would guarantee that, if a suitable vaccine is developed, they will pay for it to be bought and used in developing countries.
The Aeras Global TB Vaccine Foundation and the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA today announced they have begun the first clinical trial of a live recombinant tuberculosis vaccine in the U.S.
An editorial in this week's Economist magazine says:
"Britain's promise to buy vaccines against HIV/AIDS and malaria for distribution in poor countries, which it hopes will provide the financial carrot necessary to get drug firms to develop them, is a potentially excellent use of an aid budget."
Immunization is one of the safest ways to reduce disease and poverty in developing countries. But 3 million people die every year of vaccine-preventable diseases; and that will likely rise to 4.5 million when rotavirus and pneumococcus vaccines are available, if past experience is any guide. And progress towards vaccines suitable for HIV, malaria and tuberculosis is painfully slow.
As the most fragile Americans line up for a dwindling supply of flu shots, many people are wondering why vaccines, arguably the most essential and cost-effective pharmaceutical products, seem to be one of the health system’s weakest links. Americans are discovering what people in the developing world have long known: on their own, markets fail to provide the right vaccines when and where they are needed most.