Bolsonaro once more refuses lockdown as Brazil COVID disaster drags on

Authorities in Sao Paulo say they plan to open a ‘vertical cemetery’ to deal with persevering with surge in coronavirus deaths.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has reiterated that he has no plans to order a nationwide lockdown, a day after the nation noticed its highest variety of coronavirus deaths in 24 hours.

Brazil’s Well being Ministry registered 3,829 deaths on Wednesday, barely decrease than 4,195 fatalities from the day past, a grim nationwide file.

“We’re not going to just accept this politics of keep dwelling and shut every thing down,” mentioned Bolsonaro throughout a speech within the metropolis of Chapeco, resisting mounting stress on his authorities to account for its dealing with of the surging pandemic.

“There will probably be no nationwide lockdown,” he mentioned.

Bolsonaro, a COVID-19 sceptic who has downplayed the specter of the virus, has remained defiant within the face of public well being specialists who’ve more and more voiced the necessity to implement strict coronavirus curbs to handle the disaster.

Greater than 336,000 individuals have died from COVID-19 in Brazil thus far, in response to a Johns Hopkins College tally, and projections present that fatalities will proceed to climb if nothing is finished to stem the unfold of the virus.

Employees exhuming outdated graves to create more room within the cemetery [File: Amanda Perobelli/Reuters]

On Wednesday, the director of the Pan American Well being Group (PAHO) mentioned Brazil was among the many international locations registering among the highest numbers of recent each day COVID-19 circumstances on the planet. The Brazilian Well being Ministry reported 92,625 new infections on Wednesday.

“During the last week, the US, Brazil and Argentina have been among the many 10 international locations on the planet registering the very best variety of new infections worldwide,” Carissa Etienne mentioned throughout a weekly information briefing.

In the meantime, authorities reported Brazil’s first confirmed case of the South African variant of the coronavirus on Wednesday, fuelling added considerations concerning the nation’s skill to deal with surging infections.

A variant first found in Brazil’s Amazonas state, referred to as P1, and the South African variant are believed to be extra simply transmissible than the unique pressure of the novel coronavirus.

“It could possibly be an enormous duel,” Maria Carolina Sabbaga, a analysis coordinator at Brazil’s Butantan biomedical institute, informed the Reuters information company, concerning the two variants.

“I believe P.1 has already taken over. I’m undecided if the South African will overtake P.1, let’s see,” Sabbaga mentioned.

Brazil rolled out its vaccination marketing campaign in January, however thus far solely 8 % of the inhabitants has been immunised amid restricted provides of doses.

Brazil has thus far sourced vaccines from AstraZeneca and China’s Sinovac.

Sao Paulo, Brazil’s largest metropolis, on Wednesday mentioned it will start opening about 600 new graves a day amid the surge in coronavirus fatalities, properly past the file of 426 each day burials on March 30, Reuters reported.

Town can be getting ready plans for a “vertical cemetery” – a crypt with 26,000 drawer-like graves that may be in-built 90 days as soon as accredited.

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