The death rate from coronavirus in Brazil is continuing to accelerate at an alarming rate, making it the emerging world's hotspot for the outbreak, even as President Jair Bolsonaro pushes for the economy to restart.
Latin America's largest country reported a record 881 deaths on Tuesday, bringing the total number of fatalities to 12,400. The number of confirmed cases topped 177,589 — surpassing Germany's 170,508, where the disease arrived a month earlier. However, local scientists estimate the real tally could be around 1m.
Mr Bolsonaro, whom critics see as Brazil's coronavirus denier-in-chief, signed a decree on Monday labelling beauty salons, gyms and barber shops “essential services” that should reopen their doors. He continues to downplay the pandemic, clashing with state governors trying to tighten social isolation measures.
Researchers at the University of Campinas said on Monday that imposing a full lockdown in the state of São Paulo, Brazil's most populous, would be inevitable in the coming weeks if the level of social isolation did not increase.