Brazil becomes 2nd country to surpass 300,000 coronavirus deaths
Brazil became on Wednesday the second country after the U.S. to surpass 300,000 COVID-19 deaths.
For the record: The health ministry confirmed Wednesday another 2,009 Brazilians had died of the coronavirus, taking the total pandemic death toll to 300,685. Brazil's population is much smaller than the U.S., which reached the milestone on Dec. 14, 2020.
- The country's daily coronavirus death toll on Tuesday passed 3,000 for the first time.
Driving the news: Brazil has reported 100,000 deaths from the virus in 75 days, "a spike health experts blame on a lack of political coordination in fighting the virus, new variants that spread more easily and a disregard for health protocols," per AP.
- COVID-19 case loads have overwhelmed hospitals across the country, and many have been operating at near or beyond their capacity.
- Several Brazilian states have reported critical medical stock levels, including inadequate amounts of oxygen, Al Jazeera reports.
Of note: President Jair Bolsonaro has repeatedly downplayed the virus, and he didn't offer any policies to address the pandemic during a meeting with the heads of other government branches, which was called to coordinate a response to the pandemic, AP notes.