Thus far, 82 percent of the indigenous people served by the Indigenous Health Secretariat of Brazil’s Ministry of Health have received the first dose of the vaccine against COVID-19. The second dose of the inoculation has been administered to 71 percent of this public.
According to a report published by the Health Ministry, the secretariat is tasked with providing health care services to 755 thousand indigenous across more than six thousand villages. Of the $295.9 million budget earmarked for the secretariat this year, approximately $15 million have been spent on tackling the pandemic.
Twenty inter-ministerial missions have been conducted in villages, with services being provided some 60 thousand times, and 6.6 supplies made available—including COVID-19 tests, drugs, and personal protective equipment, the ministry declared.
Supreme Court ruling
In July last year, Supreme Court Justice Luís Roberto Barroso issued a decision stipulating that the federal government adopt more effective measures to protect the indigenous people and develop a Plan on Tackling COVID-19 for the Brazilian Indigenous People, to be devised with the participation of the communities themselves, as well as the National Council of Human Rights.
The ministry ruled that the indigenous health measures should also serve the demands of indigenous people not living in villages.
According to the secretariat, as it stands today, over 180 thousand indigenous live in an urban environment, and the task of addressing their demands is the responsibility of state and municipal governments.