With the number of deaths worldwide from the novel coronavirus surpassing 500,000, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned Monday that the pandemic “is not even close to being over.”
“Although many countries have made some progress, the pandemic is accelerating,” WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said during a virtual news conference.
Six months after China first alerted the agency to a new respiratory infection, the grim milestone of 10 million confirmed infections has been reached.
In Latin America, the coronavirus continues to rage. Brazil, Peru, Chile and Mexico are among the most affected countries in the world.
In the capital, Brasilia, protesters put up 1,000 crosses on a lawn in front of Congress to pay tribute to COVID-19 victims. The demonstration also took place as a protest against President Jair Bolsonaro, who is accused of downplaying the pandemic.
“Brazil is suffering immense pain, a hidden pain that throbs in the face of the incredible numbers of deaths caused by COVID-19,” the organizers said in a statement.
The symbolic and silent demonstration recalled the more than 58,000 victims that the coronavirus pandemic has left so far in Brazil.
With more than 1.3 million registered cases and almost 60,000 deaths, Brazil has risen in the charts as a global hotspot for the pandemic.
As Colombia faces the daunting task of reopening certain economic sectors, the country has registered 92,000 coronavirus cases and has been recording its highest numbers of infections and deaths for almost a week.
The rising figures confront local and national authorities who are beginning to have disagreements about reopening the economy. In Colombia’s capital, Bogota, the mayor is calling for the return of a strict quarantine.
“Twenty-five percent of the people who have died from COVID-19 did not have any other disease,” announced Claudia López.
However, President Iván Duque made a new call for Colombians to learn to live with the virus in the midst of a peak of the contagion that has occurred in recent days.
The country had 3,256 deaths as of Monday.
The spread of the pandemic has overwhelmed the fragile healthcare system in Haiti, which has recorded 5,847 coronavirus cases and 104 deaths.
Doctors report that patients are arriving very ill to hospitals because they do not want to be tested due to a mistrust of authorities, and some even fear negligent treatment in hospitals, which is why experts believe the country might be underreporting cases.
A large part of Haiti’s population of 11 million has no access to running water, sanitation and health facilities, which allows for the spread of the virus.