10:00—11:00 AM ET / 3:00-4:00 PM BST

Pooling for Preparedness: The Role of Procurement in Pandemic Response


Santiago Cornejo, Executive Manager for Special Program Regional Revolving Funds, Pan American Health Organization

Beverly Lorraine C. Ho, Assistant Secretary of Health for Universal Health Coverage, Department of Health – Philippines

Andrew Jones, Principal Advisor and Chief of Vaccine Centre, UNICEF

Karrar Karrar, Head of Health Policy, Save the Children


Javier Guzman, Director of Global Health Policy and Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development

Swift and effective responses to disease outbreaks require a versatile toolkit. Pooled procurement can play a key role in enabling rapid access to safe, effective, and affordable medical countermeasures like vaccines and therapeutics. This procurement arrangement is associated with benefits such as lower prices, improved quality controls, quicker delivery, and less transaction costs—considerations with higher pay-offs as well as consequences during health emergencies like pandemics.  

Despite these promising benefits, pooled procurement has been underutilized as a pandemic preparedness and response strategy, including against COVID-19. COVAX was established as a global pooled procurement mechanism to advance efficient and equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines. However, the bilateral deals signed between countries and pharmaceutical companies constrained the impact of this central channel. In addition, regional pooling mechanisms were often slow to procure medical countermeasures, further incentivizing bilateral negotiations. As the world harnesses lessons from COVID-19 and reevaluates the global health architecture for pandemic preparedness and response, the optimal scope and scale of pooled procurement should be on the table. 

Join us for a virtual panel discussion on the role of pooled procurement in a strong global system for pandemic preparedness and response. Speakers will discuss reflections on pooling during health emergencies like COVID-19 and monkeypox; the suitability of pooled procurement for various medical countermeasures; opportunities to reinforce existing procurement platforms; whether new procurement mechanisms are needed; and the optimal governance arrangements for pooled procurement to help curb pandemic threats. The event is co-hosted by the Center for Global Development, the University of Oxford’s Blavatnik School of Government, the Global Health Impact Project, and the Independent Research Group for Global Health Justice.

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