Brazil launches new vaccination incentive campaign

Photo: Thomaz Silva/Agência Brasil

All vaccines offered by the Unified Health System (SUS) are tested, approved and safe; and fake news must be disproved because they lead many people to death.

Based on these principles, the “Vaccina Mais” vaccination incentive campaign was launched today (29) in Brasília, promoted by the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (Oops and WHO), in partnership with national, state and municipal health councils.

“We are working to undo false news that lead to death”, said the president of the National Health Council (CNS), Fernando Pigatto, during the launch ceremony of the new campaign, which also has partnerships with the National Council of Secretaries. (Conass) and the Council of Municipal Health Departments (Conasems).

According to the CNS, Brazil is one of the “few countries that offer an extensive list of free vaccines to its population”, with a National Immunization Program (PNI) that annually provides around 300 million vaccines against more than 30 diseases in approximately 38 thousand vaccination rooms spread across the national territory.

The National Health Council reaffirmed that vaccination “is one of the most effective, cost-effective and life-saving public health interventions”. The objective of the campaign is to “join efforts to make the population of Brazil aware of the importance of increasing vaccination coverage”.

right and responsibility

According to the PAHO representative in Brazil, Socorro Gross, the campaign draws attention to the need for people to be vaccinated “more than what they are doing today”. “It also shows that this “More” – used in the campaign – symbolizes the sum of efforts we need to achieve increased vaccination coverage to have healthier people,” she emphasized.

He added that “the campaign also highlights that vaccines are available free of charge by the great SUS in all Brazilian states and municipalities so that people can make use of this right, which also involves responsibilities”.

According to Gross, vaccines are “one of the most effective public health measures”, and therefore it is necessary that they remain “a global public good that cannot be withdrawn from the population because it keeps everyone healthy, helping us to eliminate diseases”. “Vaccines save lives, are safe and prevent diseases, in addition to protecting the most vulnerable communities”, he added.

Coverage drop

The CNS recalls that, thanks to vaccines, smallpox was eradicated from the world in 1980. “And the Americas region was the first on the planet to eliminate diseases such as poliomyelitis (in 1994), rubella and congenital rubella syndrome (in 2015) and neonatal tetanus (in 2017)”, he highlighted.

However, according to Fernando Pigatto, the high rate of vaccination coverage has been falling in recent years, leaving millions of people at risk.

According to the Ministry of Health, between 2015 and 2021 the number of children vaccinated with the first dose against poliomyelitis dropped from 3,121,912 to 2,089,643. As for the third dose, in the same period, the numbers reduced from 2,845,609 to 1,929,056. As a result, vaccination coverage against this disease dropped from 98% to 67% in the period.

For the CNS, insufficient immunization also resulted in the return of measles to Brazil. “The country had become free of autochthonous transmission [que ocorre dentro do território nacional] of the virus that causes this disease in 2016. However, the combination of imported measles cases and low vaccination coverage led Brazil to have an outbreak, which, since 2018, has claimed the lives of 40 people, mainly children.

“More Vaccine”

Through the “Vaccina Mais” campaign, the council intends to motivate the population to expand the use of this type of immunizing agent, bringing relevant information to different audiences about the safety, importance and effectiveness of all vaccines made available by the Unified Health System (SUS) in the National Vaccination Calendar.

In his speech, the deputy Health Minister, Daniel Pereira, highlighted that, thanks to the joint effort involving health authorities at the federal, state and municipal levels, it was possible to distribute more than 500 million doses of vaccines to combat the pandemic. .

“Every Brazilian who wanted to be vaccinated had a vaccine available to them wherever they went. The vaccine is what allowed us to arrive, today, in a much calmer scenario than in the past, when there were no beds in the country’s hospitals”, said Pereira.

“But that does not mean that we are in an environment of normality. The pandemic is here and we have to stay tuned”, he concluded.

*Source: Brazil Agency

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