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Priscilla Peixoto – from Cenarium*

MANAUS – After suspending vaccination against Covid-19 in adolescents 12 to 17 years without comorbidities in the afternoon of Thursday, 16, the state government decided to return, from this Saturday, 18, the application of immunizers in this age group. The decision was announced by State Department of Health Secretary, Anoar Samad, at a press conference held on Friday, 17, in the Auditorium of the State Department of Health (SES-AM), in Aleixo neighborhood, south-central zone of Manaus.

According to the Secretary of Health, the decision to restart was made after a council to analyze the context surrounding the guidance of the Ministry of Health to suspend the doses. According to Anoar, studies conducted by the scientific community were taken into consideration.

“In the whole of Brazil were more than three and a half million doses applied in this target audience, in Manaus, almost 70% of adolescents were vaccinated. We had notes from societies, from Anvisa itself, from the National Council of Health Secretaries [Conass], from the infectology society and others. We called an extraordinary meeting today and the decision was unanimous. All the municipal secretaries of the State of Amazonas and the State Department of Health agreed to continue the vaccination of teenagers from 12 to 17 years old”, said the secretary.

The decision was announced, this Friday, 17, at a press conference (Reproduction/Gabriel Abreu)

Guidance from the Ministry of Health

On Thursday afternoon, 16, the Minister of Health, Marcelo Queiroga, informed the suspension of vaccine against Covid-19 for teenagers. In a note released by the Extraordinary Secretary of Confronting Covid-19, the folder recommended that the application of the doses be only for teenagers from 12 to 17 years old who have permanent disabilities, comorbidities or who are deprived of freedom.

One of the ministry’s claims is that the benefits of vaccination in the public without comorbidities are not yet well defined. The ministry also claims that the World Health Organization (WHO) does not recommend immunizing adolescents with or without comorbidities. However, there are no publications of the WHO itself, officially, that guide the non-immunization of this age group.

About the subject in question, the Conass, active in the decisions about the directions of the National Immunization Plan, states that the vaccination of adolescents is necessary and safe. In Amazonas, the vaccination of teenagers started on August 14th and, according to the Health Secretary, the first doses will continue to be applied. “We will return normally from tomorrow the vaccinations and, as they started a short time ago, the process of the first dose still continues”, concluded the secretary.

According to Health Secretary Anoar Samad, in Manaus, almost 70% of the adolescents have been vaccinated (AFP/Jack Guez)

(*) With collaboration of reporter Gabriel Abreu