Corona Virus in Brazil
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Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro has tested positive for coronavirus.
He took his fourth Covid-19 test on Monday after developing symptoms, including a high temperature.
Mr Bolsonaro has repeatedly played down risks of what he has called the “little flu”, saying he would not be seriously affected. He has opposed lockdowns, which he says hurt the economy.
Brazil has the second-highest toll of Covid-19 infections and deaths in the world, after the US.
Mr Bolsonaro is in his 60’s which makes him vulnerable in contracting the pandemic.
Contact tracing and tests will be carried out for the people the Brazil President has met recently.
His pass three tests for the virus all came back negative.
The executive director of the World Health Organization, Dr Mike Ryan, wished President Bolsonaro “a speedy and full recovery from this disease”, adding: “I think the message to us all is: we are vulnerable to this virus.”
Brazil has become the second country, after the United States, to register more than 50,000 deaths from Covid-19.
It comes in the mixed growing political tension and just days after the country confirmed more than one million coronavirus infections.
Graphs of Brazil’s deaths and infections show an escalation of continuity
The World Health Organization (WHO) has also confirmed the biggest one-day increase in cases worldwide, with most of the new infections in the Americas.
The decision of Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsonaro to oppose lockdowns and focus on the economy has been hugely divisive.
Two health ministers – both doctors – have left their posts as deaths and infections have surged. The first was sacked by Mr Bolsonaro, the second resigned after disagreeing with the president.
Yesterday, Brazil’s health ministry announced that 641 more deaths had been registered in the past 24 hours, taking the total to 50,617. Over the same period it also registered more than 17,000 new infections.
Only the US has more worse overall, with not less than 2.2 million cases and nearly 120,000 deaths from the pandemic.
Brazil has become the second country in the world to record not less than one million cases of Covid-19, as the disease continues to escalate.
The health ministry also posted a record toll of new cases in the past 24 hours – more than 54,000.
Moreover, there were more than 1,200 deaths for the fourth consecutive day, taking the total to nearly 49,000.
A lack of testing suggests the true figures are higher and experts say the outbreak is weeks away from its peak.
The new figure was revealed hours after the World Health Organization (WHO) warned that the coronavirus pandemic was entering a “new and dangerous” phase, with its director general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warning that cases were rising at the same time as people are growing weary of lockdowns and governments are seeking to resume their economies.
Only the US has seen more infections than Brazil, where far-right President Jair Bolsonaro has been heavily criticised for his response to the crisis. He has repeatedly clashed with state governors and mayors who have adopted strict restrictions to curb the spread of the virus, shutting down major cities.