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Stakeholder meeting kick-starts dialogue on COVID-19 vaccine supply chain issues

Meeting discussed potential solutions to COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing bottlenecks

Stakeholders from across the vaccine manufacturing spectrum convened earlier this week to kick-start dialogue to identify, understand and discuss potential solutions for COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing bottlenecks.

The Global COVID-19 Vaccine Supply Chain & Manufacturing Summit was convened by the independent policy institute Chatham House in collaboration with COVAX, the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA), DCVMN and the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO).

The meeting, which took place on 8-9 March, aimed to ‘open dialogue’ around the issues currently surrounding COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing.

According to the discussions, vaccine manufacturers and upstream suppliers are reporting increasing shortages of raw and packaging materials, as well as critical consumables and equipment required for COVID-19 jabs.

If left unaddressed, these shortages are expected to lead to shortages of vaccines as well as impact delivery commitments.

The meeting participants discussed potential solutions to these issues, citing a number of measures to prevent bottlenecks in the system.

This includes addressing export restrictions, immediate easing and facilitation of access to raw materials and upstream supplies, as well as regulatory prioritisation of validation of supply and batch release.

Stakeholders in the meeting also discussed additional approaches, such as ensuring the free flow of goods and workforce and continued technology transfer and manufacturing partnerships between innovators and manufacturers to scale-up COVID-19 production capacity.

“What is clear is that our industry partners have risen to the occasion in developing safe and effective vaccines but now are struggling to ensure they have all the materials they need to deliver them,” said Richard Hatchett, chief executive officer of CEPI.

“We must urgently work together to prevent these shortages from slowing the delivery of the vaccines we need in order to end the pandemic,” he added.

“Manufacturing has played a key role in helping us begin to close the vaccination divide and continued collaboration will be vital if we are to achieve the global capacity needed to end the pandemic,” said Seth Berkley, chief executive officer of Gavi.

“The Summit represents an important step in building the global consensus needed to solve the bottlenecks and supply constraints that stand in our way,” he added.

Article by
Lucy Parsons

10th March 2021

From: Marketing

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