LatAm: Vaccination Challenges; Colombian COVID Variant; Pfizer’s Peru Problem


The latest news from pharma and healthcare in Latin America, including funding and logistics challenges in national COVID-19 vaccination programs, a new variant of the virus in Colombia, and the impasse between Pfizer and the Peruvian government.


First Covid-19 Vaccines Are Given in Latin America, But Region Faces Challenges (WSJ)

Countries that are among the hardest hit by the coronavirus also must contend with limited funds and logistical difficulties

Three Latin American countries administered their first doses of vaccines against Covid-19 on Thursday, as the region hardest hit by the pandemic begins what health officials say will be a long slog toward inoculating the masses.


The State of Latin American Health Cooperation (NACLA)

Regional health cooperation should be an “epidemiological shield” for Latin America. But the deterioration of coordinating bodies has caused joint responses to falter.

Responses to the Covid-19 pandemic in the past year were often limited to unilateral actions, inhibiting coordination and deepening global asymmetries and inequalities. Debilitated multilateral health systems and geopolitical disputes between China and the United States contributed to these trends. The international health cooperation system is increasingly at the mercy of conflicting interests and disputes. It has proven ineffective in solving pressing problems of health and development. In Latin America, the increasing fragility of regional integration further limits the margin of action for countries during the pandemic.


Colombia variant of COVID-19 confirmed ahead of vaccine program (The City Paper Bogota)

The Colombian government has rolled out the National COVID-19 Vaccine Program with the head of the health portfolio, Minister Fernando Ruíz, outlining the schedule and guidelines for inoculating 36 million citizens, foreigners, and 1.7 million Venezuelans living in the country.


‘Risk for future generations’? Peru clashes with Pfizer over Big Pharma’s legal immunity for Covid-19 vaccine side effects (RT)

Peru has reached an impasse with Pfizer as it negotiates a deal for a Covid-19 vaccine, the country’s health minister said, citing a conflict over legal immunity for the pharma firm that could undermine Peru’s sovereignty.

While officials have remained in “constant contact” with Pfizer since the summer, the talks ran into trouble last month amid “controversy” over some clauses of the agreement, including those linked to pricing and delivery, as well as legal immunities for the pharmaceutical giant in the case its inoculation leads to death or injury, health minister Pilar Mazzetti told lawmakers on Tuesday.


When pharma leadership becomes your own choice (World Finance)

In a heavily regulated industry, it can be difficult to stay afloat. Megalabs outlines some of the challenges and pitfalls faced by pharmaceutical companies, and explains the necessary steps that must be taken to become a leader in the field.

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