- Brazil’s seven-day average of daily COVID-19 deaths accounts for 26% of the world’s total.
- The situation is bleak and is set to only get worse, according to the Associated Press.
- A daily death toll of 4,000 is “right around the corner,” a Sao Paolo doctor warned.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
Brazil is facing the coronavirus abyss. Deaths are spiraling and crematoriums are struggling to keep up, according to reports.
The county currently has far more daily COVID-19 deaths than any other nation in the world, the Associated Press reported.
Brazil reported 3,368 new coronavirus-related deaths on Saturday, according to Worldometers.
The seven-day average — 2,542 daily deaths — accounts for over a quarter (26 percent) of the world’s total death toll, according to Our World In Data.
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There have been so many deaths that burials are happening in Sao Paulo cemeteries every few minutes, CNN reported.
Crematoriums can’t keep up, the media outlet reported. At one facility, CNN said, the demand for cremations exceeded its daily capability by three times.
The situation is bleak and, according to experts, is set to only get worse.
“We have surpassed levels never imagined for a country with a public health care system, a history of efficient immunization campaigns, and health workers who are second to none in the world,” Miguel Nicolelis, a professor of Neurobiology, said in an interview with AP. “The next stage is the health system collapse.”
The healthcare system is buckling under the pressure, AP reported. Almost all intensive care units are at or near capacity, the news agency said.
Daily deaths could also soon reach peaks of 4,000, an expert told AP. “Four thousand deaths a day seems to be right around the corner,” Dr. Jose Antonio Curiati, a supervisor at a Sao Paulo hospital, said.
A highly contagious variant is wreaking havoc, contributing to the country’s 300,000+ COVID-19 deaths so far.
President Jair Bolsonaro’s critics are also placing the blame on the leader’s resistance to introducing lockdown restrictions.
Bolsonaro has repeatedly said that lockdowns aren’t viable for the economy and has instead continued to promote baseless COVID-19 treatments, The New York Times reported.
He has referred to governors and mayors who planned to introduce lockdown measures as “tyrants,” BBC reported.
Earlier this month, Bolsonaro told Brazilians to “stop whining” about the virus.
His critics, including former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, have been vocal in their opposition to his handling of the pandemic. “It’s the biggest genocide in our history,” Lula said.
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