Vaccine Is Not Mandatory, but It Will Be 'Instrument to Return to Normality', Says Ministry of Health

After Bolsonaro's speech, secretary says ministry will encourage vaccination, but that it will not be mandatory for Covid-19


The executive secretary of the Ministry of Health, Elcio Franco, said on Wednesday (2) that the ministry will continue to encourage the population to get vaccinated as a way to prevent the return of eliminated diseases. Still, that vaccination against Covid will not be mandatory in the country.

The statement comes a day after the Federal Government's Communication Secretariat replicated, in a publication on social media, a phrase by President Jair Bolsonaro saying that "no one can force anyone to get a vaccine." This sparked criticism from health experts, who pointed out risks to the vaccination policy in the country.

Élcio Franco. Credito:Anderson Riedel/PR - Anderson Riedel/PR

Currently, Brazil is recognized for having one of the largest immunization programs in the world, which has led to the reduction and even elimination of diseases in recent decades.

Amid the controversy, representatives of the ministry avoided, in a press conference this Wednesday, reading and answering questions sent by journalists about the president's speech.

Franco, however, addressed the topic in a message with a sort of positioning of the ministry read at the end of the meeting. According to him, data from studies so far show that the country should have a safe and effective vaccine against Covid-19.

Translated by Kiratiana Freelon

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