Queiroga Admits Brazil Won't Have Large Supply of Vaccines until Second Half of Year

New Health Minister reinforces intention to accelerate immunization against Covid, but admits difficulties in acquiring doses

Natalie Cancian

Although he states that his "number 1 goal" at the Ministry of Health will be to speed up vaccination against Covid-19, the new leader of the ministry, Marcelo Queiroga, admits that Brazil will face difficulties in vaccine supply until the second half of the year.

"Beginning in the second half of the year, we will be able to have more doses available. The biggest country vaccinating its population is the United States. After they manage to vaccinate their population, we will have more doses, we expect."

BRASILIA, DF, BRASIL, 10-04-2021, 12h00: Minister Marcelo Queiroga. (Foto: Pedro Ladeira/Folhapress, PODER) - Folhapress

He tells Folha that Brazil is negotiating ready-made additional doses in an attempt to accelerate immunization.

After citing that Brazil vaccinated 1 million people a day, he avoided giving new goal predictions and said that one of the impasses is the lack of release of doses by Anvisa (National Health Surveillance Agency).

Asked about Jair Bolsonaro's speeches that go against the points he defends, such as wearing masks and isolation, Queiroga denies friction and says that it is up to him to persuade the boss about "best practices" against Covid. "If I don't succeed, it's my fault, not the president's."

Translated by Kiratiana Freelon

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