Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has launched an attack on coronavirus vaccines, even suggesting that the one developed by Pfizer-BioNTech could turn people into crocodiles or bearded ladies.
The far-right leader has been sceptical of the coronavirus since it first emerged late last year, branding it “a little flu.” This week he insisted he would not be vaccinated, even while launching the country’s mass innoculation program.
“In the Pfizer contract it’s very clear: ‘we’re not responsible for any side effects.’ If you turn into a crocodile, it’s your problem,” Bolsonaro said on Thursday.
That vaccine has been undergoing tests in Brazil for weeks and is already being used in the United States and Britain.
“If you become superhuman, if a woman starts to grow a beard or if a man starts to speak with an effeminate voice, they will not have anything to do with it,” he said, referring to the drug manufacturers.
When launching the immunization campaign on Wednesday, Bolsonaro also said it would be free but not compulsory.
But the Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that the vaccine was obligatory, although could not be “forced” on people.
That means authorities can fine people for not being vaccinated and ban them from certain public spaces, but not force them to take it.
Brazil has recorded more than 7.1 million cases and almost 185,000 deaths from Covid-19 amongst its 212 million population.
Bolsonaro said that once a vaccine has been certified by Brazil’s regulatory agency Anvisa, “it will be available for everyone that wants it. But me, I won’t get vaccinated.”
“Some people say I’m giving a bad example. But to the imbeciles, to the idiots that say this, I tell them I’ve already caught the virus, I have the antibodies, so why get vaccinated?”
There have been a small number of cases of apparent reinfection although there is no certainty over whether a person can be reinfected or how long immunity lasts.
Bolsonaro caught the virus in July but recovered within three weeks.
Brazil is in the middle of a second wave of coronavirus infections.
After peaking in June to August cases had been dropping but that changed in November.
On Thursday, Brazil surpassed 1,000 daily deaths from covid-19 for the first time since September.
The country’s immunization program has been widely criticized for being late and chaotic, not least given Bolsonaro’s opposition.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
One of Canada's oldest seniors, at 110 years old, gets COVID-19 vaccine at Surrey care home – Surrey Now-Leader
JaHyung Lee, a resident at a Newton care home, received his COVID-19 vaccine at the age of 110.
Amenida Seniors Community said in a news release that residents at the facility received the first dose of their vaccines on Thursday (Jan. 14). JaHyung Lee is one of “Canada’s oldest senior” to be inoculated.
The second dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine will be administered “in the coming weeks.”
“We are extremely lucky that we have received enough supplies to vaccinate all of our residents in care,” said Rosa Park, general manager at Amenida.
“As many of our seniors are elderly and require complex care, we can feel safer knowing that the virus won’t be spreading within our community.”
A reporter with the Now-Leader attended Lee’s 109th birthday in 2019. He was born on Aug. 27, 1910.
Meantime, Fraser Health says it has completed 151 vaccine clinics for long-term care and assisted living in the health region.
First Leeds, Grenville, Lanark COVID-19 vaccines given to long-term care workers – Global News
The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health unit said long-term care workers were the first from the region to receive COVID-19 vaccines Thursday.
All COVID-19 vaccines for the southeastern Ontario region, which includes the LGLDH catchment area, are being distributed through Kingston Health Sciences Centre (KHSC), which received about 1,900 vaccinations on Monday. The first Kingston long-term care workers received vaccines Tuesday.
The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark long-term care staff that received vaccines Thursday are part of the province’s goal to get all willing staff, residents and essential caregivers in long-term care homes and higher-risk retirement homes vaccinated by Feb. 15.
“The health care workers were excited and grateful to be getting the vaccine to help protect themselves and the residents in their care,” the health unit said.
Mobile clinics run by the health unit will begin to visit local long-term care homes and higher-risk retirement homes over the next week.
“These mobile clinics will be delivered in partnership with our homes, Emergency Medical Services and healthcare partners who have offered to support COVID-19 vaccination distribution in Leeds, Grenville and Lanark,” the health unit said.
Coronavirus: Trudeau says Pfizer delay won’t impact September COVID-19 vaccination goal
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Daily COVID-19 vaccinations jump as more doses arrive in B.C. – North Shore News
COVID-19 vaccinations are on an upward trend once again following the arrival of more doses in B.C.
The province’s entire supply of the Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE vaccine was used up early in the week, leading to dips in the number of people being vaccinated on a daily basis.
There have been 69,746 vaccinations as of Thursday (January 14), up from the 63,430 reported a day earlier.
Just over 1,100 vaccinations were administered during the province’s previous 24-hour reporting period — much lower than the 6,315 vaccinations reported Thursday.
B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix said about 25,000 additional doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine have arrived since he last briefed media Wednesday.
“We’re expecting more Moderna vaccine before the end of the week and that allows us to continue across health authorities,” he said, adding workers and residents at long-term care homes remain the top priority.
The Moderna Inc. vaccine is easier to transport than the competing Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, the latter of which must be maintained at temperatures as low as -80C before being thawed.
Once thawed, it must be administered within about five hours.
Those factors make Moderna more practical to bring to long-term care homes than the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, which initially was only administered at the manufacturer’s sites of delivery back in December before Pfizer loosened its restrictions.
More than 2.6 million doses of both the Pfizer-BioNTech and the Moderna are expected to arrive in the province between April and June.
That’s up from the 792,000 doses due to be delivered between mid-December 2020 and March 2021.
The spring estimates do not include any vaccines that have not yet been approved by Health Canada.
For example, more doses could arrive in B.C. in the spring if regulators were to approve the AstraZeneca plc. vaccine, which was given the green light in the U.K. last month.
Vulnerable populations will be the focus of vaccinations between now and March but provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said more details will be forthcoming next week about plans to begin administering doses to the broader population.
“We’ve been thinking about this quite a lot,” Henry said.
“We know that we want to provide vaccine to people over the age of 18, who live in the communities, who aren’t in long-term care … How do we do that in a way that makes sure that everybody is in contact and knows where to go, doesn’t have to stand for hours in the rain as we’ve seen in some places, other places. So we are working on that. We have some great ideas that are coming together and we’ll be providing more data.”
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