The European Union (EU) is launching the Coronavirus Global Response, an effort in support of the World Health Organization (WHO) and other supporting health organizations, to fast track the pursuit of COVID-19 diagnostics, treatments, and vaccines.
The joint and emergent call for action is meant to ensure that safe, effective, and affordable COVID-19 solutions are developed quickly and equitably.
To realize that goal, starting on May 4, the EU is kicking off a global pledging marathon, encouraging countries to assist them in their pursuit of reaching the initial target of €7.5 billion. Upon meeting that goal, they will pursue further funding for ongoing replenishment.
May 4 represents special importance to Star Wars fans and has become a sort of informal holiday on social media.
Every year, #MayThe4thBeWithYou trends online, with memes and GIFs celebrating the sci-fi classic. No doubt, even amid a pandemic, this year will be no exception.
Tapping into one of the internet’s favourite days, the EU is galvanizing support for the Coronavirus Global Response by tapping into the collective force to expedite COVID-19 solutions.
Hi @NorwayMFA – thanks for your leadership on the #COVID19 response! 🌍 Now further protect the fate of our galaxy by supporting @gavi to deliver life-saving vaccines. Make a pledge by May 4th! #DefeatDiseaseTogether#MayThe4thBeWithYouhttps://t.co/Is8JMTPoOo— Ollie (@roggsie) April 30, 2020
Hi @DutchMFA will you support the light side of the force to #DefeatDiseaseTogether? Join world leaders and pledge to help @gavi deliver life-saving vaccinations to children in extreme poverty by May 4. #MayThe4thBeWithYouhttps://t.co/y6naFS7Omw— James Anders (@JamesAn73117187) April 30, 2020
Do. Or do not. There is no try. @DanishMFA will you step up to support @gavi deliver life-saving vaccinations to those in extreme poverty by May 4? #MayThe4thBeWithYou#DefeatDiseaseTogetherhttps://t.co/FiOutQUPpF— helen o donoghue (@happyhells) April 30, 2020
The Coronavirus Global Response was borne out of several calls to action from world leaders and organizations to work collectively as a means of accelerating the development, production, and universal access to COVID-19 health technologies.
Most recently, on April 24, the WHO, Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, among others, committed to the "shared aim of equitable global access to innovative tools for COVID-19 for all."
"We need to bring the world, its leaders, and people together against coronavirus," European Commission President von der Leyen said in a statement. "Because beating coronavirus requires a global response and sustained actions on many fronts. We need to develop a vaccine, to produce it, and deploy it to every corner of the world. And we need to make it available at affordable prices."