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COVID-19: Brazil gov’t meets with five laboratories

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The Brazilian government declared it met last week with five laboratories developing vaccines against COVID-19. Representatives were welcomed from Pfizer, Janssen, Bharat Biotech, the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), and Moderna.  In a note, Brazil’s Health Ministry stated it has collected technical data on vaccines as well as on their security and efficiency.

The ministry also stated it will sign non-binding intention letters with companies for the future acquisition of doses. Any purchase of vaccines, however, may only be made after registration with Brazil’s national sanitary regulator Anvisa.

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Other criteria hinge on safety, efficiency, capacity for large-scale production, the availability of time for the vaccine to become part of the National Immunization Program (PNI), and the proposed price for the logistic incorporation and conditions offered.

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“The gatherings this week complement the contractual deals made by the federal government. As it stands today, the Ministry of Health has contractual deals for the possible access to 142.9 million doses of the vaccine against COVID-19—which may immunize at least a third of the Brazilian population, as soon as the stages are concluded for safety, efficiency, and registration,” the ministry’s note reads.

According to the ministry, production should take place autonomously at Fiocruz, and include another 110 million vaccines in 2021, “if everything transpires as planned.” The Health Ministry stated it has monitored 270 studies on vaccines across the world and intends to acquire a safe vaccine “as soon as possible.”

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