967.3K NEW COVID-19 CASES IN LATIN AMERICA & THE CARIBBEAN FROM 5 APRIL TO 11 APRIL 2021
64.5M COVID-19 VACCINE DOSES ADMINISTERED IN LATIN AMERICA & THE CARIBBEAN
353K COVID-19-RELATED DEATHS IN BRAZIL, SECOND ONLY TO THE US
92 VARIANTS OF CORONAVIRUS DETECTED IN BRAZIL
SOUTH AMERICA: COVID-19
The P.1 variant from Brazil, thought to be 2 to 2.5 times more transmissible than the original strain of the virus, is rapidly spreading across South America, as Brazil topped 13 million COVID-19 cases on 5 April. According to the health institute Fiocruz, 92 variants of coronavirus have been detected in country, which are fuelling a massive surge in cases and deaths, with 66,570 deaths recorded in March alone, more than double the previous month’s COVID-19 death toll. The country’s death toll has now surpassed 353,000, second only to the US, with projections that COVID-19-related deaths could reach 500,000 by 1 July.
The spread of the Brazil variant is also driving a surge in the virus across South America, with singleday records for cases and deaths recently set in Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela, while on 9 April Argentina recorded its highest 24-hour case count with 24,130 new cases and Peru registered its highest single-day death toll at 384 on 10 April. Given that Brazil shares a border with 10 countries, the greater transmissibility of the Brazil variant poses a grave threat to the entire continent, as the virus is spreading at a much faster pace amid the collapse of health systems and a lackluster rollout of the vaccine in most countries, prompting the governments to close their borders and tighten COVID-19 restrictions.