Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

A coalition of health justice advocates gathered outside Pfizer's headquarters in Manhattan on March 11, 2021 to call on the Biden administration to push pharmaceutical companies to commit to equitable global vaccine distribution and help end the pandemic everywhere by supporting the waiver of the World Trade Organization's monopoly protections for Big Pharma. (Photo: Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty Images)

A coalition of health justice advocates gathered outside Pfizer's headquarters in Manhattan on March 11, 2021 to call on the Biden administration to push pharmaceutical companies to commit to equitable global vaccine distribution and help end the pandemic everywhere by supporting the waiver of the World Trade Organization's monopoly protections for Big Pharma. (Photo: Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty Images)

The Global Vaccine Divide Is Widening as Rich Nations Protect Patents Over Safety

People in high-income countries that represent 16 percent of the world’s population have received 56 percent of doses.

Brian Wakamo

 by Inequality.org

We're a year into the pandemic, and thanks to vaccines, it appears we may finally have an end in sight. But, as is too often the case, vaccine distribution has been anything but equitable.

People in rich countries, such as the United States and countries in the European Union, are receiving a far larger share of vaccine doses relative to their share of the global population, according to analysis from Agence France-Presse. Meanwhile, the poorest countries are left waiting in despair as Covid-19 cases continue to rise.

Of the more than 455 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines that have been injected, people in in high-income countries have received 56 percent—far more than their 16 percent share of the global population.

Corporate profits are not more important than the lives of millions of poor people around the globe.

People in the 29 lowest-income countries have received only 0.1 percent of vaccines, despite making up nine percent of the global population.


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License.
Brian Wakamo

Brian Wakamo

Brian Wakamo is a researcher on the Global Economy Project at the Institute for Policy Studies.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

Manchin Threatening Key Climate Provision: Reports

"To take it out is to decide that climate change isn't a problem."

Andrea Germanos ·


'Make a Gesture of Humanity': Pope Francis Urges Pharma Giants to Release Covid-19 Vaccine Patents

"There are countries where only three or four percent of the inhabitants have been vaccinated."

Andrea Germanos ·


Manchin Fumes After Sanders Op-Ed in West Virginia Paper Calls Out Obstruction of Biden Agenda

"Poll after poll shows overwhelming support for this legislation," wrote Sanders. "Two Democratic senators remain in opposition, including Sen. Joe Manchin."

Andrea Germanos ·


US to Offer 'Condolence Payments' to Relatives of 10 Civilians Killed in Drone Strike

The Pentagon statement follows a call for President Joe Biden to "show real concern for civilians by taking more meaningful steps to prevent civilian casualties as a result of all U.S. lethal operations."

Andrea Germanos ·


New Filing Reveals Sinema Pads Campaign Coffers With More Pharma and Finance Funds

"This is what someone who's bought and paid for looks like."

Brett Wilkins ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo