With the WHO statement re. the COVID-19 pandemic yesterday, the Brazilian Ministry of Health published today Ordinance No. 356, to regulate the measures set out in Law 13,979/20 to deal with the new virus. The Ordinance provides for measures relating to isolation, quarantine, mandatory medical testing and vaccines, among others. According to the ordinance, isolation can only be recommended by medical prescription or by the health surveillance agent, for a maximum period of 14 days, preferably at home but also possibly in public or private hospitals. If mandatory medical examinations, tests or vaccination are needed, there must be a specific requirement by a physician or health professional. If the isolation measure is due to the recommendation of the epidemiological surveillance agent, it must occur in the course of an investigation, covering the cases of individuals who interacted with symptomatic or asymptomatic people. Regarding a statutory quarantine, the ordinance provides that it must be determined by means of a formal administrative act of the Secretary of Health of the state, municipality, federal district or Ministry of Health for a period of 40 (forty) days which could be extended depending on the evaluation of the public health emergency operations center and cannot be pointed out or maintained after the closure of the public health emergency declaration of national importance. Failure to comply with the ordinance measures will result in the responsibility of those involved, under the terms of the law.
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