Covid and TRIPS

Updated 4/28/21 12:30 p.m. with recordings and more links.

A temporary waiver of the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property (TRIPS) agreement would allow for ease of production and distribution of vaccines, medicine, diagnostics, and equipment related to COVID-19. As of Tuesday afternoon, 4/27, President Biden was still uncertain as to whether the administration would support this waiver. Alyson Bancroft, from the Free the Vaccine campaign joins “Community thru Covid” to discuss global access, the TRIPS waiver, and upcoming #FreetheVaccine actions — including the May 5 pie and ice cream rally.

Here’s the #FreetheVaccine postcard to send to President Biden, as discussed on the program. For those who prefer to follow Aly’s suggestion and call, dial 202-546-1414. There are more ways to contact the White House as well. In addition, as Aly explains, those with representation in Congress should also contact their Representatives and Senators to demand policy that benefits the world economy and public health.

Alyson Bancroft is the campaign coordinator of the Public Citizen’s Access to Medicines Program. In this role, she contributes to strategy for influencing U.S. public policy to expand the accessibility and availability of COVID-19 vaccines. An experienced activist and public health program planner, she manages relationships with partners globally and domestically.

Early in her career, Aly led diabetes camps in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and the United States. Later, at the Helmsley Charitable Trust, her projects focused on increasing access to diabetes care and insulin. Working at the Feminist Health Center of Atlanta ignited Aly’s passion for advocacy and stakeholder engagement.

Aly holds an MPH from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and completed her graduate practicum with the Center for Health Policy & Inequalities Research. She currently serves on the board of directors at Universities Allied for Essential Medicines.

Also on the April 28 show —

DCPS and J&J Updates

News segment begins around the 30:00 mark on the above audio recording.

DC Public Schools. DC Public Schools has sent out 17 notifications of COVID-19 cases within in-person classrooms since the start of Term 4, April 19. Of those 17, eleven are within Ward 8 schools, with four cases at Moten Elementary alone. DCPS, the Deputy Mayor for Education, and DC Health have all been contacted for more information, and any response will be shared as it arrives.

Informal, community-organized survey regarding asymptomatic testing and related can be found via @DCPSCovidCases on Twitter. More details from last week’s show.

UPDATE: DC Health responded 4/28 afternoon.

J&J/Janssen Vaccine. The pause in distributing the J&J/Janssen vaccine ended on April 23. More about that from our previous shows on April 13 and April 20 — see “Race against Variants.” See also announcements directly from the CDC and FDA.

Serve Your City

Beth Wagner of Serve Your City DC/Ward 6 Mutual Aid provides an update on SYC work in the time of Coronavirus — 44:20 mark on the above audio recording. Direct link to the donation page. Visit their Facebook page for links to the “DC 101” political education series.

Pandemics and Economics in History, Episode #11: “Health, medicine, and politics in disease outbreaks, beginning to explore Philadelphia yellow fever outbreaks.

“Community thru Covid” airs weekly on Wednesdays at 11 a.m. ET. Listen live on We Act Radio (audio only) and on We Act Radio’s Facebook Live and YouTube Live. Or check back for recording.


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