While the United States is quickly reaching the point of having inoculated as many adults against the COVID-19 virus as are willing and able to get vaccinated, in many countries, especially in the developing world, access to COVID-19 vaccines remains very limited. Thus, there is a significant vaccine inequality between wealthy nations and developing nations. This inequality presents a host of moral, ethical, political, and public health challenges.
One Methodist group has now responded to that vaccine inequality by issuing a statement calling for greater access to COVID-19 vaccines around the world. IAMSCU, the International Association of Methodist Schools, Colleges, and Universities, along with the Ecumenical Consultation on Protocols for Worship, Fellowship, and Sacrament, Candler School of Theology at Emory University, and the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry of The United Methodist Church, has issued a "Declaration on Global Vaccine Equity." The statement calls on Methodist-related college, universities, and health institutions to work with government and other partners to accelerate global access to vaccines.
In addition to the IAMSCU statements, Bishop Ivan Abrahams, General Secretary of the World Methodist Council, has signed on to a joint statement with other world faith leaders calling for more equitable access to vaccines and health care, both with regard to the current COVID pandemic, but also extending into other areas of public health.