The Chairman of RPF Inkotanyi, President Paul Kagame, who is in Davos, Switizerland for the World Economic Forum, has commended the global biopharmaceutical company Pfizer, for the decision make all of its patented medicines and vaccines available at a no profit to 45 countries including Rwanda.
The development was announced Wednesday Pfizer Chief Executive Albert Bourla, which he said was aimed at addressing the existing gap in health equity.
During a press conference organized to announce the move, President Kagame said that rapid and affordable access to the most advanced medicines and vaccines is a cornerstone of global health equity.
“Rwanda is very happy to take part in accord together with partner countries and we look forward to adding these life-saving medicines and vaccines to our public health,” Kagame said during a press conference, in which he was joined by Malawi’s President Lazarus Chakwera, Bill Gates, and Pfizer top management.
Rwanda is among the five African countries which have already committed to join the accord, alongside Malawi, Ghana, Senegal and Uganda.
Healthcare officials from the five countries will work with Pfizer to identify early insights and opportunities that will enable all medicines and vaccines to reach those in need.
“Combined with additional investments in strengthening Africa’s public health systems, and pharmaceutical regulators, this accord is an important step towards sustainable health security, for countries at every income level,” the head of state asserted.
Pfizer said its plan includes 23 wholly-owned, patented medicines and vaccines that treat infectious diseases, certain cancers, and rare and inflammatory diseases.
In addition to Paxlovid and Ibrance, the list includes high demand-pneumonia vaccine Prevnar 13, rheumatoid arthritis drug Xeljanz and cancer treatments Xalkori and Inlyta.
Bourla also said that Comirnaty, the Covid-19 vaccine which was jointly developed with BioNTech SE was also on the list.