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Brazil’s priority is to expand vaccination against COVID-19

26 January 2022 19:13

BRASILIA. KAZINFORM - The Minister of Health Marcelo Queiroga said on Monday (Jan. 24), that the priority of its ministry is to expand vaccination against COVID-19, with the second and the booster doses due to the increase in cases of contamination by Omicron variant, Agencia Brasil reports.

In an interview with TV Brasil, Queiroga spoke about the new program launched by the Ministry of Health to expand access for pregnant women to SUS [Brazil’s national public health care system].

According to the minister, the country shall register an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in the coming weeks and reach the peak of contamination. He believes that after this period, a rapid drop may be registered, as occurred in other countries.

«The priority is to expand vaccination coverage with a second dose and a booster shot. Brazil already has a successful campaign, but there are states where coverage is low, precisely in the northern part of the country. The capacity of the health system in these places is poorer,» he explained.

The minister said that the Brazilian government works to strengthen state Basic Health Units (UBS) to carry out preventive treatment of other diseases during the pandemic. According to Queiroga, investment in primary care has increased from BRL 17 billion ($ 3 million dollars) to BRL 25 billion ($ 4.5 billion dollars). The country has more than 53,000 family health teams and 41,000 basic health units across the country.

«We want the Basic Health Units to register all municipalities, to be able to control people's weight, control blood pressure, fight high blood pressure, sedentary lifestyle, smoking, diabetes…» he said.

Marcelo Queiroga also mentioned Cuida Mais Brasil, a program launched earlier this month to expand pregnant women's access to the public health service.

«We need to reduce maternal mortality, take care of our pregnant women's blood pressure, take care of their weight, ensure that pregnant women do not have bleeding. Those who take care of children, take care of the future of the country,» he said.