Queiroga: immunization program is the hope of putting an end to the pandemic

the minister of health Marcelo Queiroga said today (20) that the National Immunization Program (PNI) is the hope of putting an end to the covid-19 pandemic in the country. In participation of the vaccination from the island of Paquetá, district of the capital Rio de Janeiro, the minister said that the PNI has the capacity to vaccinate up to 2.4 million Brazilians a day.

The minister said that the Ministry of Health acquired more than 630 million doses of vaccines and that, of this total, more than 110 million doses were distributed. According to Queiroga, Brazil is among the five countries that distributed the most doses of vaccines to its population.

Queiroga and other health authorities went to Paquetá for the mass immunization day of the island’s residents. The action is a partnership between the Department of Health of the Municipality of Rio de Janeiro and the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz), to study Phase 4 of the AstraZeneca vaccine, when what is under analysis is the effectiveness of vaccines “in the real world” , a concept that is different from efficacy, which is the percentage of protection measured by clinical trials, in a controlled group and compared to a placebo before the vaccine was approved by the health authorities.

Mass vaccinations in Paquetá

All island residents must be vaccinated, at least with the first dose, today.

On Thursday (17), the work began to be carried out with the collection of blood samples for serological tests in residents of Paquetá who volunteered. Among the objectives, the study wants to monitor “seroconversion”, that is, who was seronegative (had no antibodies) and became seropositive (with antibodies).

The research will be able to differentiate who has acquired antibodies because of the vaccine and who acquired them due to an infection, and this will help to verify, among other points, the level of collective protection that will be achieved. According to the Secretary of Health of the Municipality of Rio de Janeiro Daniel Soranz, 70% of the population of the island took part in the test.


Fiocruz president Nísia Trindade thanked the island’s residents for their willingness to participate in the survey. She said that “vaccinating is always an emotion, when we think about the importance of research that assesses the vaccine and the impact on transmission, as is being done here in Paquetá”.


At the event, Queiroga deeply regretted all 500,000 lives lost to covid-19. “Not only those who died, but those who still suffer from this disease. It’s an international public health emergency. It is not a problem unique to Brazil and to face it, the main tool is the Unified Health System”.

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