In her remarks to the Senate’s Covid hearings committee, the Health Ministry’s Education and Labor-management Secretary Mayra Pinheiro stated that the department became aware of the lack of medicinal oxygen supplies in the city of Manaus after local authorities forwarded an email from oxygen producer White Martins.
“There was no perception that there would be a shortage. In terms of evidence, what we had was a communiqué from state officials, who forwarded an email from White Martins to the Health Minister, stating that there would be a supply problem,” she explained. Then, she added that this notice was sent on January 8.
During his deposition to the same inquiry last week, former Health Minister Eduardo Pazuello claimed he was not informed of the oxygen crisis until January 11, when the situation was already critical.
White Martins told The Brazilian Report last week that it had issued warnings since December 24, 2020, telling local officials about “the abnormal increase in consumption in Manaus.”