Bolsonaro downplays viagra scandal in the armed forces — MercoPress

Bolsonaro downplays viagra scandal in the armed forces

Wednesday April 13, 2022 – 20:44 UTC


Viagra is used to treat other illnesses, but not at doses purchased by the Brazilian Armed Forces

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on Wednesday downplayed the alleged scandal over the purchase of 35,000 pills of Viagra, a drug used to treat erectile dysfunction.

The head of state claimed that the drug is also used to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). However, according to the experts consulted by G1, the dosages included in the transactions were appropriate for this use.

The bidding process provides for the acquisition of Viagra 25mg and 50mg tablets. The Ministry of Defense informed that the drug was to be used in the treatment of military personnel suffering from pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), which is approved by the National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa).

The experts heard by G1, however, pointed out that the disease is rare and that the doses in the tender were more suitable for erectile dysfunction than for PAH.

During a breakfast meeting with ministers, lawmakers and evangelical pastors at the presidential residence in Alvorada Palace, Bolsonaro slammed the press for reporting the case. “The armed forces buy Viagra to fight high blood pressure and also rheumatological diseases. It was thirty thousand pills for the army, 10,000 for the navy, and I didn’t get it from the air force, but that must be 50,000 pills. With all due respect, it’s nothing…”

The president’s speech was broadcast by an MP on social media.

The experts consulted by G1 pointed out that the standard dose of Viagra for PAH is the 20 mg tablet. The disease is rare and affects more women than men.

Doctor Marcelo Bandeira from the Brazilian Society of Cardiology explained that the 25mg dose of Viagra, which is included in the offer, is used for erectile dysfunction. Only in the event of a shortage of the 20 mg drug does the Brazilian Society of Cardiology admit the use of higher doses, 25 mg and 50 mg.

Pulmonologist Margareth Dalcolmo pointed out that PAH is “a rare disease that depends on a relatively sophisticated diagnosis and that affects younger people, between 20 and 40 years old, mainly women”.

The tender process for the purchase of 35,000 Viagra pills by the armed forces is on the federal government’s transparency portal and had repercussions on Monday after the federal deputy Elias Vaz (PSB-GO) has demanded explanations from the Ministry of Defense on the acquisition.

Bolsonaro also commented on the case of his son Jair Renan, who last week gave a three-hour statement to federal police in Brasilia. He is being investigated on suspicion of money laundering and influence peddling within the federal government.

“The kid is 24 now, I don’t think anyone knows him, he lives with his mum, he’s been away from me for a long time, but I get him here once in a while. He has his life, I’m not going to say if it’s good or if it’s bad, but I ask God to protect him. But it’s all the time, 24 hours a day,” the president said.

The investigation was opened last March, at the request of the federal public prosecutor, on the basis of a complaint filed by parliamentarians opposed to the government.

Jair Renan is under investigation for events that allegedly took place in November 2020, when the Gramazini company obtained two meetings at the Ministry of Regional Development to discuss an affordable housing construction project. At the time of the opening of the investigations, the company of Bolsonaro’s son (Bolsonaro Jr Eventos e Mídia) published a photo of two marble pieces, which decorate the office, and tagged “Gramazini”.

Read also: The Brazilian army spends large sums on Viagra and drugs against baldness