Bill Gates: Vaccinating 70% of the Population by WHO Deadline is ‘Too Late’

Vaccine availability now exceeds demand, according to Bill Gates on Friday at the Munich Security Conference. 

Irrespective of vaccine availability, Gates believes it will be “too late” to reach the WHO’s objective of vaccinating 70% of the globe by July 2022. He also stated the aim for the next epidemic should be six months, rather than two years.

Regrets and Could Have Beens

“I know you’ve talked about this before, but where do you think we are now in beating COVID-19,” the panel’s host, Hadley Beale asked Gates, who represented the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

“Well, you understand, regrettably, the virus itself, particularly the offshoot called omicron, is a type of vaccine. It generates both B cell and T cell immune function,” Gates responded, “and it’s done a much better job of spreading to the world population than vaccines have.”

For example, Gates said surveys in Africa show well over 80% of Africans have been subjected to the vaccine or some variation of it.

“Because of the virus exposure, there is now a huge drop in the risk of getting a serious illness, which is mostly linked to getting older, being overweight, and having diabetes.”

“Sad, we didn’t do well in therapeutics. The only good therapeutics are two years in,” he added. “We were two years oversupplied with vaccines. Vaccine supply now exceeds demand.”

“We should strive to make it six months, instead of two years’ time. Some conventional platform approaches, like mRNA, allow us to achieve that. We took longer than we should have.” 

Surveys and Data

One scientific model for COVID-19 instances estimates that 73 percent of Americans are now immune to omicron, and that number could rise to 80 percent by mid-month.

“Around half of qualified Americans have gotten booster doses. About 80 million cases have been confirmed, and many more are unreported,” the Associated Press noted.

According to a CDC research, natural immunity guards against the delta strain of COVID-19 better than vaccination. However, a new study indicated vaccine-induced immunity was 17 times more protective than natural immunity.

In this study, 41 serum samples from 33 donors were matched to 28 volunteers who had all gotten two doses of Pfizer or Moderna.

People vaccinated had 16.8-fold more neutralizing antibodies than people who had natural immunity, 30.1-fold more than people who had just been diagnosed with COVID-19.

When questioned if he thought the world might achieve the WHO’s goal of inoculating 70% of the world population by mid-2022, Gates replied, “No, it’s too late. I mean, there are a lot of illnesses out there. That clamor does not exist. Nations should be sure to establish priorities.”

There was also Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly, Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde, International Crisis Group CEO Comfort Ero, and WHO’s Director General present at the conference.