How does the Pope feel about COVID-19 Vaccines?Updated: June 1st, 2021
His Holiness Pope Francis recommends getting vaccinated, calling the vaccine an “ethical obligation.”
He also called on countries to suspend the intellectual property rights that surround COVID-19 vaccines. We are months into the global vaccination campaign, but nearly all vaccinations have been in wealthy countries, leaving poor countries vulnerable to new outbreaks and emerging COVID-19 variants.
“The coronavirus has provoked much death and suffering, affecting the lives of many, especially the most vulnerable,” the Pope said. “I beg you not to forget the most vulnerable. In the midst of so much darkness and uncertainty, we lack light and hope. [We need] a spirit of justice that mobilizes us to ensure true universal access to the vaccine, and a temporary suspension of intellectual property rights.”
One of the core obstacles to vaccine equity is limited global vaccine supply and the control that pharma companies have over that supply — including who they sell doses to, how many, for what price, and when they’ll be provided. Wealthy countries get priority while poorer nations are left at the back of the line. Recently, US President Joe Biden announced his support of waiving COVID-19 patent restrictions, as have the governments of South Africa, India and New Zealand among others.