Cash-strapped Venezuela Can Not Join COVAX Vaccine Program, PAHO Says

Being locked out of COVAX will leave Venezuela dependent on the Russian vaccine at a time when health services are collapsing, and an overall economic crisis has raised doubt about the country’s capacity to conduct a vaccination campaign.

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - The timeline has closed for Venezuela to join the COVAX facility for COVID-19 vaccines, an official with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) said on Tuesday, January 19th, though the country was still negotiating for doses through other means.

Venezuela, where pandemic lockdowns aggravated an already-severe economic crisis, expressed interest in joining COVAX, according Ciro Ugarte, director of health emergencies for PAHO, the regional arm of the World Health Organization (WHO).

“However, this is not possible due to lack of resources and timely payments,” Ugarte told a virtual press conference. “The time to be . . .

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