Brazil has had the fastest-growing number of cases in the world over the past week and Brazil passed Russia Friday in total cases. It is now only behind the U.S. in number of cases.
The hardest-hit areas are São Paulo, where the mayor has said the health system could collapse in the next week or two, and the Amazon regions where health infrastructure is worse and poor indigenous communities are affected.
According to the country’s health ministry, Brazil now has 6,45,771 confirmed cases, an increase of 20,803 from yesterday, and 21,048 deaths — up 1,001 from a day prior. Russia has just over 4,58,689 cases.
President Jair Bolsonaro, already under fire for his handling of the outbreak — through he remains defiantly opposed to lockdowns and keeps pushing the unproven drug hydroxychloroquine — is now facing another political scandal that threatens his presidency.
Bolsonaro, a close ally of President Donald Trump, is furious that opponents in Congress have been asking for Bolsonaro’s phone and that of his son Carlos as part of a probe into allegations of former Minister of Justice Sergio Moro. Moro said that Bolsonaro tried to interfere in federal police investigations.
After most European countries have flattened the curves of COVID-19 infections and the U.S. has also begun to do so, new outbreak centers around the world have emerged. Brazil and Russia are now the most affected countries in the world after the U.S. and India comes fifth. While the growth of COVID-19 infections has slowed some in Russia, the curve for Brazil is still very much pointing upwards.
Outbreaks are also growing in Peru, Chile, Pakistan and Mexico, according to data by the European CDC compiled by Our World in Data. Out of all countries with more than 50,000 cumulative cases outside of Europe, some nations have also been successful in flattening the curve of infections – among them Turkey and China.