Biggest challenge during pandemic was negotiating politics: Pfizer

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Pfizer’s chief executive says the biggest challenge the company and other vaccine-makers faced during the pandemic was negotiating the politics.

Albert Bourla, who was speaking on Thursday on a panel on pandemic preparedness at the World Economic Forum gathering in Davos, Switzerland, said mask-wearing, vaccine efficacy or questions about delivering the vaccines were all politicised and were constant obstacles for vaccine-makers.

He says “the biggest challenge … was the political challenge”. He added that protectionism as a result of fear meant the governments closed down borders, making it difficult to export vaccines or bring in raw materials needed to make them.

Meanwhile, 39 organisations from nine countries, including Salesforce, Pfizer and AstraZeneca, have pledged to close gaps on global health equity. Those having signed the Global Health Equity Network Zero Health Gaps Pledge at the WEF Annual Meeting 2023 also include Anglo American, Deloitte, Gavi, Medtronic, Philips, Sanofi and Takeda. The pledge includes 10 key commitments all signatories have made to embed health equity principles throughout their operations, workforce and guiding philosophies.

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