BRASILIA - The Brazilian government announced Wednesday it was negotiating the purchase of about 30 million coronavirus vaccine doses from Russia and India, after regulators passed emergency-use authorizations.
Until now, only the AstraZeneca/Oxford shot and China's CoronaVac had been permitted in Brazil, the second-hardest-hit country after the US, with more than 226,000 deaths from Covid-19.
The health ministry said it is meeting from representatives from Russia and India on Friday to finalize details of the deal, which would see some 28 million doses delivered this month, and millions more in March.
Brazil's health surveillance agency said it would no longer require final Phase 3 trials to be carried out under the emergency authorization.
The move comes after The Lancet medical journal this week published results showing Sputnik V -- named after the Soviet-era satellite -- to be safe and 91.6 percent effective, allaying concerns over transparency.
Brazil began vaccinations January 17, starting with medical workers, the indigenous population and the elderly.
With 212 million inhabitants, Brazil has suffered an average of 1,062 deaths and 50,000 cases per day in the past week.
© Agence France-Presse