Epidemics have the power to turn our world upside down. The vast spread of disease can literally destroy societies. We set up a coalition that's responding with strength.
Our world has entered a new era of epidemic risk. CEPI is a strong, unified response to our highest priority health threats.
Epidemics have the power to turn our world upside down. From increasing threats to global health, unprecedented economic disaster and widespread chronic fear – the vast spread of disease can literally destroy societies.
Until recently, the world often largely ignored epidemic threats at its peril. In 2017, at our Annual Meeting, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) was launched – bringing together experts from government, business, health, academia and civil society to accelerate the development of vaccines against emerging infectious diseases and to enable access to these vaccines during outbreaks.
Our world has entered a new era of epidemic risk. The number of outbreaks is increasing, and the economic damage and fear they create is disproportionate to the level of illness.
Epidemics have the potential to spread widely, reflecting our hyper-connectivity and the development of higher density cities. As a result, societies are becoming more vulnerable to the disruptions that epidemics cause.
CEPI was conceived by public and private-industry partners representing global vaccine manufacturers who met at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2016 in response to the ramifications of the Ebola virus outbreak in West and Central Africa. $460 million in initial funding was provided by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Wellcome Trust and the Governments of Germany, Japan and Norway, and further commitments were made to create a total of $800 million. With the advance work that CEPI undertook, prepared vaccines could go straight to phase-three trials and get regulatory approval faster.
Partnerships have also been established with organizations across biotechnology, vaccine manufacturing, academia and multinational corporations to further the scope of what CEPI can achieve.
To date, CEPI has committed to investing more than $456 million in vaccine development. This includes 19 vaccine candidates against priority pathogens (six against Lassa virus, five against MERS-CoV, four against Nipah virus, two against Chikungunya, two against Rift Valley fever) and three vaccine platforms to develop vaccines against Disease X (unexpected diseases). To assess the effectiveness of these platforms, seven additional vaccine candidates are being developed (two against influenza, one against Marburg virus, two against rabies virus, one against respiratory syncytial virus, and one against yellow fever). As of November 2020, there is now a licensed Ebola vaccine due to the innovation driven by CEPI.
The world needs stronger, unified responses to our highest priority health threats. By creating alliances and coalitions like CEPI, which involve expertise, funding, support and contribution from all levels of our community, we are able to collectively address the most pressing global health challenges.
The World Economic Forum provides a platform to bring stakeholders together to improve the state of the world. You can partner directly with our Platform for Shaping the Future of Health and Healthcare to contribute to global health solutions.
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