The latest news from Brazil, including Pfizer’s plans to vaccinate the entire Brazilian city of Toledo, what the US can learn from Brazil’s successful vaccine campaign, and a new deal to import the vaccine candidate from China’s CanSino Biologics.


Pfizer will vaccinate entire city in Brazil as part of study (New York Times)

In the southwestern Brazilian city of Toledo, you won’t find much vaccine skepticism. About 98 percent of eligible residents there have received at least one dose of a Covid vaccine, according to municipal officials.

Most received the vaccine offered by Pfizer, and this week the drug maker said that presented an opportunity: Pfizer announced that it would fully vaccinate everyone in the city over the age of 12 so it can carry out a study of the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine.


In Brazil’s successful vaccine campaign, a lesson for the U.S. (Salon)

As the Covid-19 vaccine campaign gained steam in the United States last spring, I was locked down in my apartment in Rio de Janeiro, trying to avoid being infected with the virus. Brazil — then, as now, second only to the U.S. in coronavirus deaths — seemed to have the world’s slowest immunization program rollout. Brazilian cities had started vaccinating locals in January, but there just weren’t enough doses to go around.

As the pace of vaccinations in the U.S. soared, Brazilians were debating the merits of lockdowns and liberally taking medications with no evidence that they were effective against the coronavirus. I watched with envy as my American friends posted “I’m vaccinated!” photos on my social media feeds. So in June I left Rio de Janeiro, and returned to my hometown of Chicago where I received my first dose the day I landed.

Since then, however, the tables have turned. The vaccination rate has ramped up considerably in Brazil and stalled in the U.S.


Brazil’s Biomm Pharma signs agreement with Chinese CanSino to import Covid-19 vaccine (The Rio Times)

Brazilian pharmaceutical company Biomm has signed an agreement with the Chinese CanSino Biologics to market in Brazil the Covid-19 vaccine Convidecia.

According to the company’s president, Heraldo Marchezini, at first, the contract foresees only the importation of the immunizer, as soon as the National Health Regulatory Agency (Anvisa) authorizes its emergency use in the country, with subsequent technology transfer to the Brazilian company.


Rebuffed by Bolsonaro, Brazil medical institute to sell vaccines abroad (Reuters)

Brazil’s Butantan biomedical institute is in talks to sell a locally manufactured COVID-19 vaccine developed by China’s Sinovac to other countries in South America and Africa, as the federal government has not ordered more of the shots.

Butantan Director Dimas Covas said on Wednesday that the institute also has contracts to supply the vaccine directly to Brazilian states.


Pandemic healthcare pressure linked to large number of COVID-19 deaths in Brazil (Imperial College London)

Healthcare pressure together with inequities in healthcare capacity across Brazil drive high number of COVID-19 deaths.

Half of Brazil’s COVID-19 deaths in hospitals could have been avoided by minimizing shocks to the healthcare system, according to the latest report by the Imperial College COVID-19 Response Team.

Brazil’s freely accessible line list data constitutes one of the world’s largest databases to characterise the pandemic impact of COVID-19 in a middle-income country. The team collaborated with a large number of Brazilian and international partners to analyse this data.