The indigenous population of the Amazon region began to receive the first doses of the vaccine against Covid-19 on Tuesday, January 19th.
All the Legal Amazon State received the first doses of the vaccine produced by the Butantan Institute in partnership with the Chinese laboratory Sinovac, and have already started immunization.
After meeting with civil society and public entities, the Ministry of Health defined the criteria for prioritizing the groups most vulnerable to Covid-19. As one of the most seriously affected by the disease, indigenous populations are part of the priority group in the first phase of the vaccination.
“We need to have solidarity with those who have lost loved ones to the pandemic and, despite our best efforts, we have lost 61 indigenous people. Now, with the arrival of the vaccine, our hopes of protecting the life of each indigenous community in our State are renewed. Starting today, we will vaccinate over 23 thousand indigenous people, this is what respecting and taking care of people means,” said the Governor of Pará, Helder Barbalho, in a visit to indigenous lands.
The states have the autonomy to define priorities and distribute vaccines based on the Ministry’s recommendations. In general, due to a shortage of vaccines, states are prioritizing health professionals working on the front lines, elderly people, and indigenous people living in villages.