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Sport Olympics-Brazil to start vaccinating athletes, staff headed to Tokyo Games

14:31  12 may  2021
14:31  12 may  2021 Source:   reuters.com

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(Reuters) - Brazilian athletes and staff travelling to Tokyo for the Olympics will receive COVID-19 vaccines with the first doses set to be administered on Friday, the Brazilian Olympic Committee (COB) has said.

a sign on the side of a building: FILE PHOTO: The headquarter of the Brazilian Olympic Committee is seen in Rio de Janeiro © Reuters/SERGIO MORAES FILE PHOTO: The headquarter of the Brazilian Olympic Committee is seen in Rio de Janeiro

The COB said they are looking to administer the second dose by June 21 -- two weeks before the start of the July 23-Aug. 8 Games. Paralympic participants will also get their shots before the Games begin on Aug. 24.

Around 1,800 people are set to be vaccinated across six cities, with COB vice-president Head of Mission Marco Antonio La Porta saying the Brazilian population would receive two doses for every person on the delegation who is vaccinated.

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a close up of a bottle with a blue toothbrush: FILE PHOTO: A woman holds a medical syringe and a small bottle labelled © Reuters/Dado Ruvic FILE PHOTO: A woman holds a medical syringe and a small bottle labelled "Coronavirus COVID-19 Vaccine

"This is a great contribution from the Olympic Movement at this very difficult time that the world is facing," La Porta told reporters.

"Even without the vaccine being mandatory for participation in the Games, there is no doubt that we will feel safer to represent Brazil in the Olympic Games."

Health Minister Marcelo Queiroga said they would be using either the Pfizer or the Sinovac shots.

Brazil has recorded the second-deadliest COVID-19 outbreak in the world and continues to average more than 2,000 deaths per day. More than 425,000 people have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic began, according to the Health Ministry.

On Tuesday, the Health Ministry announced it had signed a deal for Pfizer to deliver an additional 100 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine, doubling the number of shots from the company.

(Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

Brazil struggles to vaccinate as Covid toll spirals .
Four months into a Covid-19 vaccination campaign marred by shortages and delays, hard-hit Brazil is still struggling to find enough doses, as political and diplomatic blunders prolong its pandemic nightmare. Around 33 million people -- 15 percent of the population -- have received at least one vaccine dose in Brazil, a proportion still too small to have a substantial impact on the virus' spread. Targeted by a Senate inquiry over its handling of the pandemic, President Jair Bolsonaro's government is facing criticism for failing to secure more vaccines, including its refusal of offers to purchase millions of doses and diplomatic tension with China that may be slowing

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