The ACT-Accelerator Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator

A coordinated, global response to the pandemic is needed now more than ever. Only united can we fight COVID-19.

Our role in the

The Global Fund is a founding partner of the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT-Accelerator). This global collaboration of leading public health agencies is working with governments, civil society and industry to accelerate the development and equitable distribution of tests, treatments and vaccines – and the strengthening of health systems – that the world needs to fight COVID-19.

The Global Fund is co-leading on three of the ACT-Accelerator’s four components – the Diagnostics Pillar, Health Systems & Response Connector and the Therapeutics Pillar.

ACT-Accelerator progress


Since April 2020, the ACT-Accelerator partnership has supported the fastest, most coordinated, and successful global effort in history to develop tools to fight a disease. The ACT-Accelerator has driven real progress, delivering diagnostic tests, personal protective equipment (PPE), treatments including medical oxygen, and vaccines.

But inequitable access to these COVID-19 tools is severely hindering the pandemic response in low- and middle-income countries and new variants of concern continue to emerge around the globe. There is still much more to be done to fight this virus. Only united and through a comprehensive approach of all these interventions and tools can we defeat COVID-19.

The ACT-Accelerator will need US$23.4 billion for the period of October 2021 to September 2022 to address crucial gaps in access to COVID-19 tools and to achieve the following targets:  

  • Contribute towards reaching the global target of 70% vaccination coverage in all countries by mid-2022.
  • Reach a minimum testing rate of at least 1 test per 1000 people per day in the 144 countries in the Diagnostics Consortium.
  • Ensure 120 million COVID-19 patients in low- and middle-income countries have access to existing and emerging treatments, including medical oxygen.
  • Keep 2.7 million health workers in low- and middle-income countries safe with personal protective equipment (PPE).

Mobilizing more

The Global Fund is committed to working with our ACT-Accelerator partners to mobilize the funds needed for the global COVID-19 response, and to play our part in supporting low- and middle-income countries to deploy safe and effective diagnostics and treatments including medical oxygen, protect health workers and strengthen health systems.


Diagnostics Pillar

Testing is the first line of defense against COVID-19. Without testing, we cannot track or contain the spread of the virus, address urgent clinical needs, test the efficacy of vaccination, and detect the emergence of new variants.

With the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND), the Global Fund co-leads the Diagnostics Pillar. The Pillar is working to significantly increase access to COVID-19 tests and sequencing, which will ensure effective test, trace, isolate, and treat strategies, as well as early identification and containment of new variants.

The Global Fund is focused on the procurement of antigen rapid diagnostic tests (Ag RDTs) and molecular polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests, the strengthening of laboratory infrastructure and capacities, and significant requirements for training and technical assistance.

Find out more about the Diagnostics Pillardownload in English ]

Find out more about the Global Fund's support for diagnostics

Therapeutics Pillar

With the challenges of an evolving pandemic and difficulty in large scale uptake of vaccines, therapeutic treatments will remain critical in the COVID-19 response, saving lives and reducing the burden on health systems. 200 million new COVID-19 cases are expected in the next 12 months and limited access to oxygen to treat COVID-19 is an emergency impacting more than half a million people in low- and middle-income countries every day.

The Therapeutics Pillar supports access to safe and effective treatments to save millions of lives from COVID-19 and to minimize its global health and economic threat. This includes deploying existing treatments, including medical oxygen, introducing new COVID-19 therapies once proven effective, and strengthening research efforts to enrich the therapeutic clinical pipeline.

The Global Fund is a key partner in the Therapeutics Pillar for procurement and delivery of treatments including medical oxygen for low- and middle-income countries. The Global Fund is also a crucial partner in the COVID-19 Oxygen Emergency Taskforce, which brings together key organizations working on oxygen access under the Therapeutics Pillar to measure oxygen demand, work with financing partners, and secure oxygen supplies and technical support for affected countries.

Find out more about the Global Fund's support for oxygen

Health Systems & Response Connector

Co-led by the World Bank, WHO and the Global Fund, the Health Systems & Response Connector ensures all countries have the necessary technical, operational and financial resources to translate new COVID-19 tools into national response interventions to stop transmission and save lives. This includes equipping health care workers with personal protective equipment (PPE) to safely deliver essential health services.

The Global Fund focuses on the procurement of PPE, the strengthening of supply chains, and supporting community-led responses.

Find out more about the need to protect health workers

Find out more about the health systems & response connector

ACT-Accelerator progress

As of January 2022

Diagnostics Pillar Progress


  • Over 148.3 million COVID-19 tests (48.8 million PCR tests and 99.5 million Ag RDTs tests) have been procured for low- and middle-income countries as of 10 January 2022.
  • Over 42,200 health care workers are being trained in almost 200 countries to effectively implement the tests.
  • Over 90 RDTs have been independently assessed and benchmarked against quality criteria to inform government procurement of quality COVID-19 tests.
  • Unparalleled innovation in the development of diagnostic tools led to 28 WHO emergency use listed (EUL) tests.
  • Fast-tracked access to affordable, high quality Ag RDTs for low- and middle-income countries has been secured. By working with industry and manufacturing partners on initiatives including scale up of local manufacturing, the Diagnostics Pillar has managed to cut the price of Ag RDTs in half since September 2020, from US$5 to US$2.5.
  • Further price reductions have been achieved for select molecular products including Cepheid Xpert Xpress SARS-CoV-2 assay from US$19.80 to US$14.90.
  • Regionalized manufacturing and technology transfers have been improved to increase global manufacturing capacity of quality and affordable RDTs in low- and middle-income countries.

The Global Fund, as part of ACT-Accelerator

As of 17 January 2022, the Global Fund has procured over 69.2 million diagnostic tests for 105 countries through the Global Fund’s Pooled Procurement Mechanism and/or on

  • 54.7 million Ag RDT tests procured across 72 countries
  • 9.1 million automated PCR diagnostic tests procured across 92 countries
  • 5.4 million manual PCR diagnostic tests procured

Therapeutics Pillar Progress


  • 3.2 million lifesaving dexamethasone treatments have been purchased in advance (including 2.9 million by UNICEF)
  • Over 300 actionable trials across product categories have been tracked for monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), novel antivirals and repurposed therapeutics.
  • Research that identified dexamethasone as the first life-saving therapy for COVID-19 was supported and guidance provided on its use.
  • The Therapeutics Pillar has also analyzed over 1,700 clinical trials to identify promising COVID-19 treatments that could be scaled up, and funded multiple large-scale global clinical trials, including Recovery International and the ANTICOV trial. Recovery trials have started in Indonesia and Nepal, with Vietnam and Ghana following shortly. ANTICOV clinical trials have started in 13 African countries to test a new drug combination to treat mild-to-moderate COVID-19 cases.
  • The Therapeutics and COVID-19: living guideline contains the most up-to-date recommendations for the use of therapeutics in the treatment of COVID-19.
  • The COVID-19 Oxygen Emergency Taskforce was formed to confront surges in oxygen demand and cut preventable deaths.
  • Memoranda of understanding (MoUs) have been signed with two multinational oxygen suppliers to pave the way for long-term agreements to widen access to liquid oxygen.

The Global Fund, as part of ACT-Accelerator

Following WHO recommendations, the Global Fund is supporting the use of evidence-based therapies that have demonstrated benefits in reducing COVID-19 mortality. In addition, since August 2020, the Global Fund has made available the procurement of oxygen equipment products on The Global Fund has awarded US$519 million for oxygen products as of 17 January 2022.

Health Systems & Response Connector Progress


  • ACT-Accelerator partners have procured personal protective equipment (PPE) for low- and middle-income countries.
  • Country readiness for the deployment of COVID-19 vaccines has been assessed in 128 LMICs.
  • Disruptions to 90% of health systems and services have been documented through national pulse surveys of more than 100 countries.
  • A “Transforming the Medical PPE Ecosystem” paper was produced as part of the 'Rethinking PPE’ initiative.
  • Global and regional guidance and training materials have been developed to support health financing and COVID-19 costing, strengthen community engagement in the COVID-19 response, bolster critical supply chain capabilities, and enhance engagement with the private sector and several other critical areas.

The Global Fund, as part of ACT-Accelerator

  • US$763 million of C19RM funds have been approved for the provision of personal protective equipment (PPEs):
    • C19RM 2021: US$487 million as of 17 January 2022
    • C19RM 2020: US$276 million in 2020
  • 83 countries have purchased PPEs on as of 17 January 2022.

ACT-Accelerator Funding

(Source: WHO)

An unprecedented mobilization of sovereign funders and private sector, philanthropic and multilateral contributors galvanized commitments of US$18.8 billion for the ACT-Accelerator until 29 October 2021. Looking ahead for the period of October 2021 to September 2022, the ACT-Accelerator is facing a funding need of US$23.4 billion (see details in the Strategic Plan and Budget 2021-2022).

Total funding needs (October 2021 to September 2022): US$23.4 billion

Funding needs by Pillar:

  • Vaccines: US$7 billion
  • Diagnostics: US$7 billion
  • Therapeutics: US$3.5 billion
  • Health Systems and Response Connector: US$5.9 billion

Total funds committed as of 21 January 2022: US$582 million

Learn more about our operational response to COVID-19

Response Mechanism

Published: 14 April 2021