The death toll is rising in South America as the number of infected people has risen sharply prompting fears that Latin America is on course to being the new epicentre of the pandemic.
In Brazil there are more than 250,000 confirmed cases which makes it the third highest in terms of reported cases globally. Other Countries including Mexico, Peru and Chile are equally struggling to control outbreaks.
Although cases and death rates are lower than USA and Europe, there are different sets of challenges in this region. Poor infrastructure, extreme poverty, lack of sanitation amongst other issues are making it difficult to control the pandemic. Perhaps the most pressing is the lack of effective testing and poor communications in the rural areas making it difficult to have accurate reporting of the number of cases that actually exist.
Peru has reported over 100,000 which is more than China has reported. Ecuador has the most deaths per capita where 17 deaths per 100,000 population. Chile is reporting thousands of new cases daily with more than 500 people dead. Mexico and Brazil are the two most populous nations in the region and have seen the highest number of deaths more that 6000 and 18,000 respectively.
Where the virus appears to be abating in the US & Europe it is climbing in Latin America making experts worry about these already economically challenged economies.