Progress Toward Targets
Global entities, such as the WHO, set ambitious targets for vaccinating the world. Unfortunately, many countries missed the global 10% coverage target (September 2021) and the 40% coverage target (December 2021) and it is widely acknowledged that more than 100 countries have missed the 70% coverage target (June 2022). The first Global COVID-19 Summit set ambitious targets for vaccination coverage with a deadline of the 2022 UN General Assembly (UNGA). Our analysis indicates 79 countries have met the 70% vaccination coverage target and 134 countries have missed the by the 2022 UNGA.
The WHO set ambitious targets for vaccinating the world which were supported by other global entities and countries. Unfortunately, the world missed the global 10% coverage target (September 2021) and the 40% target (December 2021) and it is widely acknowledged that around 100 countries will miss the 70% target (June 2022).
Many countries have set their own national targets for population coverage, which range from 20% to 95% with varying timescales, but few have met the targets yet. Despite falling short of the targets, progress is being made and vaccinations are steadily increasing in many of these countries (see Figure 5 under Challenges to Reaching Coverage Goals).
In the face of Omicron and its sub-variants, COVID-19 vaccines have successfully reduced hospitalization and death, even while infection rates remain high among vaccinated populations. Given this context, prioritization for full vaccination and boosters should be given to the highest-risk populations, including people over the age of 60, people with comorbidities and suppressed immune systems, and health care workers.
We are able to track vaccination coverage for ages 60+ and for health care workers in many COVAX Advance Market Commitment (AMC) countries but have not yet found public data on coverage among populations with comorbidities or suppressed immune systems. Such information will be important to track over time to follow progress toward high-priority goals.
As more of the global population completes primary vaccination, and as protection wanes with time, it is also important to track progress in administering booster doses. Policies on boosters and which populations are eligible for them vary by country and are not easily tracked, but WHO does provide data on boosters administered per 100 people. This metric is more appropriate for boosters than percent of population since some countries are already offering.
The WHO also provides data on the number of booster doses administered per 100 people and total number of booster doses administered in vulnerable populations, such as healthcare workers and those aged 60+. There is data missing for several countries, but similar trends emerge with booster doses administered in vulnerable populations as with boosters amongst the general population. High-income countries administer more booster doses in healthcare workers and those aged 60+ than low-income countries. This metric will be important for ensuring priority groups are reached following the WHO recommendations prioritizing second COVID-19 booster doses in vulnerable populations.