Brazil to Mandate COVID Shots for Children as Young as 6 Months
The Brazilian Ministry of Health has added the COVID-19 vaccine to the country’s mandatory vaccination schedule for children 6 months to 5 years old, and is considering establishing school vaccination centers with strict reporting requirements.
The Brazilian Ministry of Health has added the COVID-19 vaccine to the country’s National Immunization Program (PNI) for children 6 months to 5 years old, Agência Brasil reported.
The new policy will take effect in 2024, despite growing opposition among Brazilians and testimony by experts highlighting concerns about the safety of COVID-19 vaccines for children and increased incidences of myocarditis, pericarditis and other conditions among young vaccinated individuals.
Despite these concerns, which were addressed in a recent hearing before Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies and by several opposition lawmakers, Brazilian Minister of Health Nísia Trindade defended the new policy, while the Brazilian government said families of unvaccinated children will not receive support from the Bolsa Família welfare program.
In addition to the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for young children, a bill under consideration by the Brazilian Senate would establish vaccination centers in the country’s schools.