São Paulo to sue Health Ministry for “dismantling” ICU infrastructure

health São Paulo Governor João Doria. Photo: GOVESP
São Paulo Governor João Doria. Photo: GOVESP

Governor João Doria of São Paulo accused the Health Ministry of decommissioning 3,200 intensive care beds for Covid-19 patients in the state. He said that his administration will take the matter to the Supreme Court if the federal government does not provide resources to fund this infrastructure.

“The federal government breaks the federative pact when it prevents São Paulo from having those resources. It clearly shows a political bias by the Health Ministry in the face of the pandemic,” said Mr. Doria. He added that other states have experienced a similar problem.

The Covid-19 pandemic has put Mr. Doria at odds with President Jair Bolsonaro over the best way to manage the crisis. The governor of São Paulo placed his bets on the Chinese-made CoronaVac vaccine — which Mr. Bolsonaro dismissed on multiple occasions.

According to data obtained by newspaper O Globo, the Health Ministry invested BRL 1.5 billion to keep ICUs in the state from April 2020 to February 2021. 

Mr. Doria added that the Ministry has not sent 3.4 million syringes and needles to São Paulo, which are essential to continue the state’s vaccination campaign. According to São Paulo Health Secretary Jean Gorinchteyn, the state requested the inputs three times in the last week alone.

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