Tiago Tasca By: Tiago Tasca
Researcher in Global Health
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01 May 2020 : After the storm...

A new month has come, but an ongoing challenge is still here: coronavirus. While I try to keep my mental health, Brazilian politics goes very, very bad. At first, our Ministry of Health left the office. The main reason lies in his decisions and recommendations that were not aligned with President's expectations. Our President is hardly committed to the end of lockdown because his political basis strongly rejects the severity of COVID-19. During March, the President told that COVID-19 was just a "gripezinha" (little flu) and we should not fear. Why? Well, he did not explain very well why. Maybe we must fear both COVID-19 and the President's decisions. This week, when asked about his impressions on the rising of deaths in Brazil due to the COVID-19 he said: "And so what?," well, he said he has nothing to do with this. Again, I cannot explain his lack of humanity consciousness. Second, the Ministry of Justice was "fired." I said "fired" because I cannot tell you with 100% of certainty if he was actually fired. The reason behind this decision is the head-chief of Brazilian federal police. The President wanted to assigned someone under his auspices (patronage?) to be the chief of Brazilian federal police. Hopefully, our President made a speech to reveal the "thruth" about these decisions. He reunited all the Ministries (around 15-20 and only one of them was actually using a face mask). During his speech, the President does not even mentioned anything about the COVID-19. I am a little bit scared because in the middle of this pandemic scenario, the President want just to "save" himself. No mea culpa was pronounced. Today, in CNN breaking news, the President told, AGAIN, that he wishes the end of lockdown measures. Why? Oh, he thinks people should back to work. How safe this people will be? Not sure. Also, today I visit the little hospital in my city (~40,000 hab) and I asked nurses about their work. They told me that everything is going pretty well, but they fear the weeks to come. Why? Because we do not have enough COVID-19 tests. I also try to contact the mayor of my city, but he did not answer me. I sent him some preprints about the region's vulnerability. No success. I think that our policymakers really fear evidence-based decisions because these decisions are not entirely aligned with they economy-based mindsets. Several researches have pointed out that many evidence-based decisions have a neoliberal foundation, but I sincerely think that present-day preprints are more focused on insights about human security (in a human rights conception). I fear Brazilian politicians as well as I fear COVID-19: both makes me feel insecure, fragile, and hopeless. Next month is my birthday and I will back to Brasilia (since November I have been treated because I was diagnosed with depression). I am feeling stronger now and you guys, from global health diaries, are giving me strength to keep walking in these gray times. As we learned, after the storm, the rainbow shines (oh, and the President is homophobic.)

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