Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who has steered the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic, is on course to serve a second five-year term as head of the World Health Organization (WHO) after being the only candidate nominated by 28 countries.

Merck & Co. signed a licensing agreement with the United Nations-backed Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) that will allow more companies to manufacture generic versions of the company’s experimental oral antiviral Covid-19 treatment, the U.S. drugmaker and the organization announced on Oct. 27.

The United States plans to donate an additional 500 million Covid-19 vaccines made by Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE to nations around the world, lifting the total the country is sharing to more than 1 billion doses, according to a source familiar with the plans.

U.S. President Joe Biden will announce new steps to slow the spread of Covid-19 before the U.N. General Assembly meets, Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy said Sept. 12.

Former British prime minister Gordon Brown accused rich countries of committing a “moral outrage” by stockpiling Covid-19 doses while poor countries struggle to get supplies.

Coronavirus variants with clunky, alphanumeric names have now been assigned the letters of the Greek alphabet to simplify discussion and pronunciation while avoiding stigma.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called on May 12 for the need to double the capacity of Covid-19 vaccine production and for fairer redistribution of the shots in the developing world, which faces new waves of the coronavirus.

Former U.S. Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton said they were willing to be vaccinated against the novel coronavirus on television in order to ease any public skepticism over the safety of new vaccines.

World leaders came together virtually to mark the 75th anniversary of the United Nations, as the deadly coronavirus pandemic and tensions between the United States and China challenge the effectiveness and solidarity of the 193-member body.

One in seven cases of Covid-19 reported to the World Health Organization is a health worker and in some countries that figure rises to one in three, according to the WHO.