Tracking COVID-19 Vaccines Around the World
In November 2020, the world received the exciting news that the first COVID-19 vaccines were ready for roll out — and as of now, nearly 7.25 billion doses have been pre-purchased by countries and organizations around the globe.
Today’s visualizations highlight the number of vaccine doses that different countries have purchased, as well as the companies and organizations that have pre-sold them.
The data has been collected via the Launch and Scale Speedometer at the Duke Global Health Innovation Center with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Breaking Down COVID-19 Vaccines by Country
Although high income countries are currently buying the larger shares of doses, India has ordered 1.5 billion — more than any other individual country.
The U.S., in comparison, has pre-purchased 1.01 billion doses, and although this number is less than the amount India has purchased, the U.S. has around 330 million people compared to India’s burgeoning 1.3 billion citizens.
*COVAX is a global initiative to provide equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines
Without the purchasing power of high income countries, low and middle income countries must leverage other means to acquire COVID-19 vaccines, like volunteering to host clinical trials in exchange for doses, as was done in Peru. India’s ability to purchase so many doses has come out of manufacturing agreements with vaccine producers.
As a percentage of total doses sold, high income countries have bought almost 54%, equating to 4 billion doses. Meanwhile, low and middle income countries have purchased just over 23%.
Notably, Canada has reserved the highest number of doses per person compared to any other country, having ordered over 350 million vaccinations for a population of just over 38 million people, equating to nine doses per person.
The Business of COVID-19 Vaccines
There are currently over 200 vaccine candidates being developed and tested at breakneck speed. However, one important aspect to note is that not all of the vaccine candidates that are being pre-sold will pass the testing stage.
The Oxford University vaccine is the most popular so far, with over 2.5 billion doses sold. The academic institution, together with AstraZeneca, is doling out 500 million vaccines each to India and the U.S., as well as 400 million to the European Union.
Novavax, the second highest seller of COVID-19 vaccines, has pre-sold 1.3 billion doses. So far, the early birds Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna have pre-sold 10% and 6% of the total vaccine doses being manufactured respectively.
In terms of pricing, Pfizer-BioNTech, for example, is selling their vaccines at $19.50 per dosage. With the current number of doses already sold by Pfizer-BioNTech, that amounts to a current revenue of over $13 billion.
The Way Forward
Without COVID-19 vaccines, health and safety measures such as social distancing and self-isolation would likely stay in place for the foreseeable future.
Looking beyond which countries receive the vaccines first, the World Health Organization has created a road map detailing which individuals should be prioritized, with a focus on frontline healthcare workers and the elderly.
A future where life is somewhat back to normal is on the horizon, but some countries are set to get there faster than others.