By Abankula with agency reports
Brazil’s death toll from COVID-19 surpassed 500,000 on Saturday, with experts warning the fatalities may worsen.
The reasons for the grim forecast were delayed vaccinations and the government’s refusal to back social distancing measures.
Only 11% of Brazilians have been fully vaccinated, so far.
Epidemiologists warn that deaths will continue to mount even if immunizations gain steam.
One of the drivers of this scenario is the arrival of winter in the southern hemisphere.
The second is the new variant of the coronavirus circulating.
Up till Saturday, Brazil registered 500,800 deaths from 17,883,750 confirmed COVID-19 cases.
It is the worst official death toll outside the United States.
It also has the third highest caseload, next to U.S. and India.
Over the past week, Brazil has averaged 2,000 deaths per day.
This week, new confirmed cases in Brazil accelerated to more than 70,000 per day on average.
It edged past India for the most cases in the world.
On Saturday, 81,574 cases were logged, with the death toll of 2,247, all world daily records.