Coronavirus: Brazil becomes second country to pass 50,000 deaths

Brazil has become the second country, after the US, to register more than 50,000 deaths from Covid-19. It comes amid growing political unrest and just days after the country confirmed more than one million coronavirus infections.

Experts warn that the peak of the outbreak in Brazil is still weeks away.

Brazil now has a total of 1,085,038 confirmed cases and 50,617 deaths, up from 49,976 on Saturday, the Health Ministry said. Experts say the true numbers are a lot higher because of a lack of widespread testing. Latin America’s largest country has typically recorded more than 1,000 deaths a day, but usually registers fewer on the weekends.

Brazil confirmed its first case of the novel coronavirus on February 26 and passed 1 million cases on Friday. Since first arriving in the country, the virus’ rapid spread has eroded support for right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro and has raised fears of economic collapse after years of anemic growth.

Bolsonaro, sometimes called the “Tropical Trump,” has been widely criticised for his handling of the crisis. The country still has no permanent health minister after losing two since April, following clashes with the president.

Mr. Bolsonaro asserted that the economic impact of the measures will be much larger than the virus itself, a position shared by many. But its comprehensive approach to the crisis led to the resignation of two physicians that the minister of health.

There is no national program of lock, but states and cities have adopted their own measures. After months of restrictions, some of which are in the process of being lifted, even if the levels of infection remain high.

There is still that the health system will be unable to cope in some places, and that the disease spreads more quickly in poor neighborhoods, and in remote areas, such as aboriginal communities, where access to quality healthcare is difficult.