Brazil ignored Pfizer’s offers of COVID-19 vaccine for months last year, company says – National

todayMay 14, 2021

share close

Pfizer repeatedly offered to sell its COVID-19 vaccine to Brazil’s Health Ministry between August and November last year, but got no answer from the government, Pfizer’s chief executive for Latin America told lawmakers on Thursday.

A Senate commission is investigating whether President Jair Bolsonaro’s government mishandled the pandemic by failing to secure vaccines in time to curb a surge that has killed more than 430,000 Brazilians — the worst COVID-19 death toll outside the United States.

Read more:
Brazil detects 1st case of South Africa COVID-19 variant as deaths skyrocket

Pfizer executive Carlos Murillo said that on Sept. 12 the company’s CEO sent a letter to Bolsonaro and others in his cabinet, including then-health minister Eduardo Pazuello, expressing interest in providing Brazil with vaccines.

The letter went unanswered for two months, the parliamentary commission has established.

Story continues below advertisement

Pazuello, who was replaced last month as criticism mounted over vaccination delays, failed to take Pfizer up on its offers last year because he believed Brazil should rely on British and Chinese vaccines produced in the country, two sources told Reuters.

Click to play video: 'Brazil’s president downplays pandemic as death toll soars'

Brazil’s president downplays pandemic as death toll soars

Brazil’s president downplays pandemic as death toll soars – Apr 10, 2021

Production issues and bottlenecks in China have slowed local output of those vaccines. Just 11% of Brazilian adults have been fully vaccinated.

Pazuello is due to testify before the commission on May 19.

In his weekly live internet broadcast on Thursday, Bolsonaro said Brazil secured a better deal this year than what was offered by Pfizer earlier, citing legal and health uncertainties as the vaccine had yet to receive regulatory approval last year.

Read more:
Brazil’s largest city begins exhuming old graves to make space for COVID-19 dead

Story continues below advertisement

The Brazilian government eventually negotiated with Pfizer for 100 million doses in a contract signed in March, with the first 1 million doses arriving in late April.

Another lot of 628,000 doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine landed in Brazil from Belgium on Wednesday, the Health Ministry said, adding that it has so far distributed 1.6 million doses of the shot in the national immunization program.

Murillo said Pfizer is about to sign a contract for 100 million more doses for delivery to Brazil in the fourth quarter.

(Reporting by Anthony Boadle and Maria Carolina Marcello; Editing by Brad Haynes and Bill Berkrot)

Source link

Written by: admin

Rate it

Previous post


9 wounded, 3 critically in shooting in Rhode Island capital: police – National

Nine people were wounded in a shooting Thursday evening in Rhode Island’s capital in what police there believe to be the largest shooting in city history.Of the nine, three had serious injuries and were “maybe critical,” Providence Police Chief Col. Hugh T. Clements told reporters at the scene.He said multiple guns were used and it involved an “ongoing feud” involving two groups known to authorities. He said the shooting began […]

todayMay 14, 2021

Similar posts

Post comments (0)

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *