American business magnate Bill Gates has advised Buhari’s led administration to make judicious use of its limited resources to stabilize the healthcare system in the country rather than spending high on COVID-19 vaccines.
The Microsoft co-founder turned philanthropist said this during a virtual press conference ahead of the launch of the 2021 Bill and Melinda Gates annual letters which held on Tuesday night, Jan 26th
Bill Gates advised against using the country’s limited resources to order expensive Covid-19 vaccines when it can wait for those from Gavi.
He said that the government should wait for Gavi vaccines and the money proposed for the Covid-19 vaccines to be channeled into other health-related areas as it would help deepen vaccine coverage and help save lives.
“The key is that Nigeria is still eligible (for GAVI Vaccinee), and so, for a lot of those vaccines, they will come through the GAVI facility that we’ve raised money for.“I’m an advocate for the government to have more resources and prioritize health. Obviously, I’m not a voter in Nigeria, so Nigeria can decide that independently.“So my advice is that the primary health care system is what’s super important and that with those finite resources, you have to prioritize expenditure. And in that case, waiting for the GAVI vaccines would be the best thing.”
Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance is a public-private global health partnership with the goal of creating equal access to new and underused vaccines for children living in the world’s poorest countries.
Gates also advised the authorities of other nations to start preparing for the next pandemic, as no country can afford to be caught unguarded again.
“The unfortunate reality is that COVID19 might not be the last pandemic. We don’t know when the next one will strike, or whether it will be a flu, a coronavirus, or some new disease we’ve never seen before.”“But what we do know is that we can’t afford to be caught flat-footed again. The threat of the next pandemic will always be hanging over our heads unless the world takes steps to prevent it,” he said.