Nurse first in Brazil to get Chinese COVID-19 vaccine

Nellie Chapman
January 18, 2021

(MENAFN - Trend News Agency) Brazil will begin mass vaccination against COVID-19 starting Wednesday, its health ministry announced Sunday, Trend reports citing Xinhua.

The Brazilian nurse works at the Emilio Ribas Institute of Infectious Diseases in Sao Paulo.

On Sunday, Anvisa approved emergency use of the Sinovac vaccine and one from AstraZeneca, although a hurried plan to get 2 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine was hamstrung by a lack of export approval from India.

Vials of the COVID-19 vaccines are seen inside a cooler in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on January 17, 2021.

Sao Paulo Governor Joao Doria, who oversees the Butantan biomedical center that is partnered with Sinovac in Brazil, said Anvisa's decision was a triumph for science as he gave the go-ahead for the first vaccination in his state.

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Overall, the outbreak has killed some 210,000 people - likely to be an undercount, experts say - in the vast South American nation of 212 million people. The country has so far recorded nearly 8.5 million Coronavirus cases and over 200,000 deaths. The trial is expected to be conducted in India in 1,500 participants and will be a randomised, double-blind, parallel-group, placebo-controlled study. "I am excited", Calazans told reporters with tears in her eyes after receiving the vaccine.

The Butantan Institute, meanwhile, applied to Anvisa on Monday for emergency use of another 4.8 million doses of CoronaVac which require separate authorization because they were bottled in Brazil.

Northern Amazonas state, which has been battling record deaths and burials as hospitals run out of beds and life-saving oxygen, should start inoculating people on Tuesday morning, the government said.

The governor of Sao Paulo, Joao Doria, wrote on Twitter, "Brazil is in a hurry to save lives".

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