The number of deaths related to Covid-19 has passed 500,000 in Brazil, the second-highest in the world. Brazil’s Health Ministry recently announced that there are 505,000 confirmed deaths of Covid-19. Experts say this new death toll could worsen as Brazil struggles to distribute vaccines amid slow production and a lack of cold storage capacity for vaccine distribution.
Thousands of Brazilians on Saturday marched in protest against the response of President Jair Bolsonaro’s administration to a pandemic that has killed close to half a million people in the country – the most after the United States. President Jair Bolsonaro is blamed for failing to acquire vaccines fast enough and prioritizing unproven treatments for COVID-19 over mask-wearing. A total of 2,301 deaths have been confirmed in the past 24 hours. Experts fear that the outbreak will worsen if no action is taken immediately.
Within the second day of protests in less than a month, anti-Bolsonaro movements continue to strengthen amid a growing rate of Covid-19 infection, while only 11% out of 212 million Brazilians have been vaccinated. The Brazilian president, who has underestimated the pandemic and resisted containment measures, is being investigated by a congressional inquiry. His administration lags in acquiring vaccines but forces victims to take ineffective drugs such as chloroquine.
One demonstrator, who wished to remain anonymous, said: “We are protesting against the genocidal Bolsonaro government that has not made vaccinations a priority in the last year.”
“500,000 deaths from a vaccine-preventable disease in a country that has been a world leader in vaccination. There is one word for that “Genocide.”
There’s been no significant slowdown in Brazil.” I don’t know if it’s the third wave. It seems we never got out of the first one,” said Alexandre da Silva, a specialist in public health at USP.” It appears that pandemic has now turned into a marathon runner who is pacing his race. It’s not a sprinter who makes his sprint but then loses power.”
Experts say the virus will likely claim more lives as it moves into winter and evolving variants of the coronavirus continue to circulate. Ex-head of Brazilian health regulator Anvisa Gonzalo Vecina said:” I think we are going to reach 700,000 or 800,000 deaths.”
Brazil has been registering close to 100,000 new infections a day, leading the world in numbers. Late last month, polling showed that Mr. Bolsonaro’s popularity has plummeted to an all-time low. Only 24% of Brazilians consider his administration as a success for the country.
A parliamentary inquiry in Brazil’s Senate is looking into President Bolsonaro’s handling of the pandemic. The president’s opponents, unhappy with how he has downplayed the effects of the virus and delayed ordering vaccines, accuse him of doing so for political reasons.
He said he had done all in his power to purchase vaccines from multiple countries. He also insists the economic impact of lockdowns would be worse than the virus. The president has not commented on the 500,000 deaths related to Covid-19 in Brasil. On Twitter, health Minister Marcelo Queiroga expressed solidarity with “fathers, mothers, friends and relatives” of those deceased as they mourn the loss of loved ones
The COVID-19 situation in Brazil has reached its worst point yet. President Jair Bolsonaro faces mounting pressure from protesters and the Brazilian media to resign over his handling of this pandemic response. As more people die each day, tensions are heating up in cities across the country as demonstrators call for him to step down with signs demanding “Bolsonaro Out.” Protests had been held in at least 44 cities in 20 states. Demonstrators have called on their president to stop suppressing information about the virus and create an emergency plan so they can avoid future outbreaks.