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Brazil's Fourth Health Minister since Pandemic Expected to be Formally Appointed Wednesday

By VOA News March 17, 2021

Brazil's fourth health minister in a year is promising a continuation of the anti-COVID restriction policies of President Jair Bolsonaro, ahead of his formal appointment on Wednesday.

Cardiologist Marcelo Queiroga assumes his post, a day after Brazil logged a record one-day total of 2,841 COVID-19 deaths.

Following the spike in deaths, Queiroga urged people to continue wearing masks and washing their hands but did not propose restrictions such as lockdowns, which are not favored by Bolsonaro, who has downplayed the virus even after he became infected.

Queiroga has reportedly been working with outgoing Health Minister Eduardo Pazuello, who also backed Bolsonaro, but it is unclear when he will take over as the fourth health minister since the pandemic began one year ago.

Brazil has one of the highest COVID-19 infections rates in Latin America, with more than 11,519,000 infections and 279,286 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University Covid Resource Center.

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