On July 7, Bolsonaro tested positive for COVID-19, and despite cancelling official trips scheduled to the interior of the country, declared his intention to continue with official duties using video conferencing and receiving assistance in signing documents.
“I am perfectly fine, I am taking measures to avoid infecting third parties” said the president after announcing the positive result of the test. He also noted that he does not have a fever at the moment, attributing his condition to the consumption of hydroxychloroquine, a drug whose effectiveness has not been proven, nor is it recommended for its side effects in treatment.
Bolsonaro was tested after several symptoms were identified. However, over the weekend he participated in official meetings with U.S. officials in the framework of Independence Day. In addition, in recent days he held a series of meetings with Brazilian ministers, including Paulo Guedes (Economy), Braga Netto (Civil House), Luiz Eduardo Ramos (Government Secretariat) and Vice President Hamilton Mourão. All of them will be tested.
While Bolsonaro’s initial intention is to continue in office, this will depend on his condition. The Brazilian Constitution defines that the vice-president may take office during the period of the president’s incapacity, which is defined by the president himself.
Hamilton Mourao has already held the office of president pro tempore when Bolsonaro was hospitalized for surgery following problems arising from the attack he suffered during the election campaign.