Governor João Doria announced on Monday (8) that the Butantan Institute will promote, as of February 17, an unprecedented mega-operation of mass vaccination to test the reduction of contagion by the new coronavirus in a given population. The action will take place in the municipality of Serrana, where all about 30 thousand residents over the age of 18 will receive the vaccine developed by Butantan in partnership with the biopharmaceutical company Sinovac.
“The Butantan vaccine will be tested in the city of Serrana, in the interior of the state of São Paulo, to prove that, in addition to being effective and safe, it can also reduce contagion,” said Doria.
With the initiative, which has the character of clinical research, it will be possible to study the efficiency of the vaccine in decreasing the transmissibility of the virus. The effectiveness and safety of the immunizer has already been proven through phase 3 tests with 12,500 volunteers in 16 brazilian research centers.
The municipality of Serrana was chosen to host the project because it has a high prevalence of infections, among other factors. The goal will be to study the epidemiological impact of vaccination on the adult population as a whole, from the point of view of containing the pandemic.
The vaccine will be applied through voluntary participation by the inhabitants, with an interval of four weeks between doses. For this, the city was divided into 25 sub-areas that will form four large population groups, called clusters, each identified with a different color – green, yellow, blue and white.
People must attend to receive the immunizer on previously scheduled dates. The study will make comparisons between clusters, before and after vaccination. The vaccination start dates for each of the large population groups will be 17 and 24 February and 3 and 10 March. There will be eight application sites.
Only residents of Serrana will be able to participate in clinical research. Butantan already has a good part of people’s records, made through a health census. Children under 18, pregnant or breastfeeding women and those who had a fever in the previous 72 hours will not receive the vaccine.
“This is another important step that we take to have new answers about vaccination. This project will undoubtedly serve as an example for the world to evaluate the efficiency of mass immunization in reducing the transmissibility of the coronavirus”, says the Director of the Butantan Institute, Dimas Covas.