The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation on Wednesday rolled out a series of expanded measures including an additional 150 million U.S. dollars to combat COVID-19 globally.
The added funds will finance the development of diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines, as well as new efforts to provide partners in Africa and South Asia with resources to scale their COVID-19 detection, treatment, and isolation efforts.
The foundation will leverage a portion of its 2.5 billion Strategic Investment Fund, which uses a suite of financial tools to address market failures and incentivize private enterprise to develop affordable and accessible health products.
The foundation called on world leaders to unite in a global response to COVID-19 to ensure equitable access to diagnostics, treatments, and vaccines.
“We have a responsibility to meet this global crisis with global solidarity,” said Gates Foundation co-chair Melinda Gates.
“The world community must understand that so long as COVID-19 is somewhere, we need to act as if it were everywhere. Beating this pandemic will require an unprecedented level of international funding and cooperation,” said foundation Co-chair Bill Gates.
The foundation identified four priority areas for investment including accelerating virus detection, protecting the most vulnerable, minimizing social and economic impact and developing products for a sustained response, and cooperating with national governments and international organizations such as the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children’s Fund.
The newly announced funding builds on the 100 million dollars the foundation has committed to date to support the global response.