Brazil, one of the countries hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic, announced this Thursday your adherence to the Covax program, the platform of the World Health Organization (WHO) consisting of the first binding contract to obtain COVID-19 vaccines.
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, one of the world leaders more skeptical of the magnitude of the pandemic and who despite having been infected by the disease continues to minimize its impact, promulgated two provisional measures on Thursday to guarantee the country’s access to the platform.
In addition to your access to Covax, an instrument of the Accelerator for Access to Tools against COVID-19 (ACTA, for its acronym in English), promoted by the WHO, The Government also determined the release of resources for 2.5 billion reais (about 454.5 million dollars) to participate in the program.
According to the state news service Brazil Agency, the resources will allow the country to guarantee vaccines for 10% of the population until the end of 2021, with an emphasis on the highest-risk population, and, in turn, participate in cooperation so that the poorest countries can have access to them.
The portfolio will allow Brazil, the second country with the highest number of deaths (almost 140,000) and the third in number of confirmed cases (close to 4.7 million), the access to nine vaccines in development and others under analysis by WHO.
However, the Presidency clarified that joining the Covax does not prevent Brazil from entering into other types of bilateral agreements such as those that they already have with initiatives of the private and state pharmaceutical industry of some countries.
The National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa, regulator) authorized clinical tests on volunteers of the vaccines from the Anglo-Swedish laboratory AstraZeneca and the British University of Oxford, with 10,000 people; from china Sinovac, with 13,060, and the European of the multinational Johnson & Johnson, with 4,000.
The consortium’s vaccine also has the endorsement of the regulatory body BioNTech (Germany) and Wyeth/Pfizer (United States), which has another 1,000 volunteers.
Another vaccine, the only one of synthetic origin and which is being developed by the American pharmaceutical company Covaxx and the network of Brazilian clinical laboratories Dasa, awaits authorization to be tested also in Brazil on 3,000 volunteers.
Anvisa also clarified that the Russian Sputnik V vaccineAs it was developed entirely outside the country, it will not have volunteers and its marketing authorization will be given with the “registration” that will be granted “after complying with all requirements.”
However, Anvisa has held “preliminary meetings and anticipating a possible future demand” with the regional government of the state of Paraná (south), bordering Argentina and Paraguay, which established a agreement with the Russian health authorities for antivirus marketing.
The state of Bahia (northeast) also has an agreement with Russia to commercialize 50 million doses of this vaccine, contemplating future production of the same, and a similar one with the Chinese state Sinopharm to test two antivirus from that laboratory that are being developed in Beijing and Wuhan.
Five Latin Americans at Covax
Brazil It is the fifth nation in the region to join the program promoted by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Alliance for Vaccination (GAVI).
Peru confirmed last Saturday that it signed an agreement with the Covax Mechanism by which it will access more than 13 million doses of future vaccines against the virus. Chile and Colombia They announced their alliances on Tuesday to “have more alternatives, certainty and access to an effective vaccine,” explained President Sebastián Piñera at an event with President Iván Duque.
AND Mexico formally entered the initiative on Thursday. Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard communicated from his Twitter account that the country assured its “participation in the main multilateral initiative to guarantee universal access to the vaccine against COVID-19.”
Argentina, meanwhile, he expressed his intentions to join the initiative but asked the WHO for more time to prepare the required paperwork after the deadline to do so, he told Reuters an official from the Ministry of Health. Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guatemala, Panama, Uruguay, Venezuela, Paraguay and the Dominican Republic have also shown interest in Covax.