Brazil faces the threat of a second wave of coronavirus

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Brazil, second country with the most deaths from coronavirus, registers an increase in hospitalizations that arouses fears of a second wave of the pandemic like the one that hits Europe and the United States.

The average number of deaths, which had exceeded 1,000 per day between June and August, fell below 350 at the beginning of last week, in this country of 212 million inhabitants where the disease has already left more than 166,000 dead. But since last Saturday it exceeded 500 again.

The state of San Pablo, the most populated and with the highest number of cases and deaths, had an 18% rise in hospitalizations last week.

This alarming figure prompted local authorities to halt the progressive easing of restrictions that began in June.

Well, after the partial quarantines decided after the first cases in February, the Brazilians were loosening the rules and they now live almost normally, as if the virus has disappeared.

In the main cities, shops, schools, gyms and cinemas reopened, while the beaches, bars and restaurants fill with people.

The recent increase in hospitalizations was reported mostly in private clinics and

At the beginning of the week, “we had 90 patients with covid or with suspected covid, while in the last three months there was a set that varied very little, between 48, 50, 55 cases,” Sidney Klajner, president of the Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo, one of the most prestigious in the country.

“Most of the patients who test positive They are young“he explained.

An unauthorized party over the weekend summoned more than 2,000 people – most without masks – on Ipanema Beach, in Rio de Janeiro. The occupancy rate for intensive care beds reached 95% last week in Rio’s municipal hospitals.

Klajner, however, considered it premature to speak of “a prolonged upward trend” that prefigures a second wave.

But Domingos Alves, head of the Health Intelligence Laboratory (LIS) at the University of Sao Paulo (USP), stated instead categorically: “We are already in the second wave.”

The specialist draws attention to the recent increase in the reproduction rate of the virus, that is, the number of infections for each infected. A rate higher than 1 is considered worrying.

At the beginning of October, “the infection rate was 0.97,” with four of the 27 states above 1, Alves said. One month after, “We have 14 states with more than 1”, he claimed.

“We have reached a worrying level, especially since the official figures are very underestimated and the number of exams has fallen,” he added.

For Julio Croda, infectologist at the University of Mato Grosso do Sul, in a country of continental dimensions like Brazil, the second wave It should reach the regions differentlys, some richer and with better hospital structure.



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