The West African country of Ghana has received the world’s first delivery of virus vaccines from the U.N.-backed COVAX initiative.
It marks the long-awaited start for a program that has thus far fallen short of hopes that it would ensure shots were given quickly to the world’s most vulnerable people.
The arrival of 600,000 AstraZeneca doses is part of the largest vaccine procurement operation in history, according to the World Health Organization and UNICEF.
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But the COVAX initiative has been hampered by the severely limited global supply of doses.
It already missed its own goal of beginning vaccinations in poor countries at the same time as immunizations were rolled out in rich ones.
So far, global vaccinations have been extremely uneven: 80% of the 210 million doses given out have been in just 10 countries.