Brazil puts over US$1bn into H1N1 care
This article was originally published in Clinica
Diagnostic supplies, hospital equipment and additional intensive care capacity are among the beneficiaries of a R$2.18bn (US$1.16bn) emergency fund approved by the Brazilian government to help tackle H1N1 "swine" flu. The funds (which will also be used to acquire 73 million vaccine doses and over 11 million courses of antivirals) will be disbursed rapidly, said federal health minister José Gomes Temporão on August 27. The main aim of this "provisional measure" is to prepare for an expected worsening of what will "certainly be a rapidly changing situation [globally]", he said. Brazil ranks seventh in the world among countries with the highest official H1N1 mortality, which are mainly in the southern hemisphere, where the winter flu season is peaking.