May 25, 2021
For Whose Benefit? Transparency in the development and procurement of COVID-19 vaccines
The COVID-19 pandemic has required an unprecedented public health response, with governments dedicating massive amounts of resources to their health systems at extraordinary speed. Governments have had to respond quickly to fast-changing contexts, with many competing interests, and little in the way of historical precedent to guide them.
Transparency here is paramount; publicly available information is critical to reducing the inherent risks of such a situation by ensuring governmental decisions are accountable and by enabling non-governmental expert input into the global vaccination process.
This report analyses transparency of two key stages of the vaccine development in chronological order: the development and subsequent buying of vaccines.
Given the scope, rapid progression and complexity of the global vaccination process, this is not an exhaustive analysis. First, all the following analysis is limited to 20 leading COVID-19 vaccines that were in, or had completed, phase 3 clinical trials as of 11th January 2021. Second, we have concentrated on transparency of two of the initial stages of the process: clinical trial transparency and the public contracting for the supply of vaccines. The report provides concrete recommendations on how to overcome current opacity in order to contribute to achieving the commitment of world leaders to ensure equal, fair and affordable access to COVID-19 vaccines for all countries.