Geneva, 30 October 2020 – As part of the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic, COVAX – the vaccines pillar of the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator, co-led by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and the World Health Organization (WHO) – welcomes the appointment of civil society organisation (CSO) representatives to key COVAX working groups. The involvement of civil society has been crucial in public health campaigns in recent years – in promoting access to health products, engaging with the public and expanding the reach of public health organisations in rolling out programmes around the world.
The representatives were selected by a civil society selection committee made up of members from 10 civil society organisations from 7 countries and 4 continents. The 10 appointees were selected from a pool of 159 candidates based on a range of criteria: technical expertise, CSO experience and connectedness, knowledge of immunisation and of how CSOs engage in the immunisation space, and the detailed technical criteria outlined in the call for applications for each workstream. Gender and geographical diversity were also taken into consideration. In addition, all candidates were thoroughly assessed by the COVAX workstream leads and leadership.
The selected representatives will be involved in a number of key groups contributing to the only global solution for equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines for the most vulnerable groups around the world. The 10 civil society and community representatives will provide valuable technical expertise and use their experiences to play an important role in the success of COVAX.