Brazil has started large-scale production of the AstraZeneca vaccine at the country’s key Fiocruz research facility in Rio de Janeiro, according to local media reports.
The vaccine produced with drugs imported from China has passed the necessary tests and 3.8 million doses can be expected to be handed over to the Health Ministry in Brasilia by the end of March.
The recent arrival of a shipment of raw materials to make 12.2 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine had raised new hopes for a vaccination breakthrough amid the rapid spread of the coronavirus in Brazil.
With Fiocruz, Brazil has a vaccine factory that is considered the largest in Latin America.
By the middle of the year, Fiocruz wants to produce a good 110 million doses of AstraZeneca’s coronavirus vaccine using imported pharmaceuticals.
In the second half of the year, thanks to technology transfers, it will be able to produce further 110 million doses completely independently.
The South American country started vaccinations in January.
So far, more than 11 million people have been proven to be infected with coronavirus in Brazil.