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JUST IN: Vatican Lays Out 20 Points for ‘Universal & Fair Destination of Vaccines’
December 29, 2020. A Joint Venture of Vatican’s COVID-19 Commission & Pontifical Academy for Life (FULL TEXT).

‘Vaccine for all. 20 points for a fairer and healthier world’

This is the title, or rather vehement exhortation, of a joint document published today, Dec. 29, by both the Vatican’s COVID-19 Commission and the Pontifical Academy for Life.

The text, published by the Holy See Press Office and accompanied by a press release, “reiterates the critical role of vaccines to defeat the pandemic, not just for individual personal health but to protect the health of all.”

“The Vatican Commission and the Pontifical Academy of Life remind world leaders that vaccines must be provided to all fairly and equitably, prioritizing those most in need,” it says.

Moreover, the document explores the issues and priorities arising at the various stages of vaccine journey, from research and development to patents and commercial exploitation, including approval, distribution and administration.

Echoing Pope Francis’ recent Urbi et Orbi Christmas Message, “it calls on world leaders to resist the temptation to participate in “vaccine nationalism”, urging nations and companies to cooperate – not compete – with each other.”

Prefect of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, Cardinal Peter Turkson, who also leads the specialized Commission expressed his gratitude to the scientific community for developing the vaccine in record time.

“It is now up to us,” the Vatican prefect underscores, “to ensure that it is available to all, especially the most vulnerable. It is a matter of justice. This is the time to show we are one human family.”

Similarly, President of the Pontifical Academy for Life, Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, stresses “The interconnectedness that binds humanity has been revealed by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“Together with the Commission,” he highlights, “we are working with many partners to point out lessons the human family can learn and to develop an ethics of risk and solidarity to protect the most vulnerable in society.”

Moreover, the Secretary of the Vatican’s Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, Mons. Bruno Marie Duffé, points out: “We are at a turning point in the COVID-19 pandemic and have an opportunity to start to define the world we want to see post-pandemic.”

Father Augusto Zampini, Adjunct Secretary of the same dicastery with an important role on the Commission also observes: “The way in which vaccines are deployed – where, to whom, and for how much – is the first step for global leaders to take in committing to fairness and justice as the principles for building a better post-COVID world.”