(Image source from: globaltimes.cn)
India has transcended Brazil to become the second worst-hit country by the coronavirus in the whole world and is now nearing the count of the US.
During the weekend and from a few days ago in the week, India has been reporting a record daily spike in the number of coronavirus cases which has led to the country crossing Brazil and become the second country in the world to be affected the most due to the virus after the United States.
India has registered a whopping and unprecedented 90,800 COVID-19 positive cases on Monday itself.
As per a health review on September 7, there have been around 42,00,600 confirmed coronavirus positive cases in India, along with 71,642 fatalities. According to John Hopkins University, Brazil has seen a bit lesser count with 41,37,521 cases and the United States has a total of around 62,00,004 COVID-19 cases.
Throughout the pandemic, most of the focus of Brazil was about its President Jair Bolsonaro and his mismanagement of the crisis but August seeing the unprecedented spike in the cases has turned the eyes of Brazil’s public towards the severity of the infection.
How did Brazil reduce the COVID severity faster than India?
The first positive COVID-19 case in Brazil came just after a month after India has reported its first case, but just two weeks later, by the middle of March, Brazil had witnessed more cases than that in India.
Brazil was one of the few countries in the world which have not implemented a nationwide lockdown but the states in Brazil like Sao Paulo have implemented individual lockdowns.
Brazil’s COVID-19 surge began in May but in the case of India, the surge was seen from July onwards.
So, since the end of July, it was clear that Brazil was taking proper care of the citizens in preventing from COVID-19 while India has not hit the peak yet.
Balsonaro was oblivious to the virus’s intensity and called it the little flu. Moreover, he was seen appearing in large gatherings by shaking hands with people and without wearing a mask.
He opposed social distancing and lockdowns even after he got the virus. He often stressed that Brazil’s economic collapse would be worse than the effect of the coronavirus.
Although India has now overtaken Brazil in terms of the number of cases and daily spikes, the virus has already spread far deeper into the Brazilian population than it has yet in India; Brazil has over six times as many cases when compared to its population than India.
From March, the cases spiked up and Brazil hit the one million mark in the cases by June 6 while India took more than a month after that to reach there.
By September, Brazil was reporting more cases in its rural areas than it’s urban areas. Since the end of July, it was clear that Brazil was flattening its curve while India has not even hit the peak yet.
But Brazil has reported over 10 times as many deaths when compared to that as India. These deaths could be easily avoided by taking accurate and timely measures.
One policy that Brazil used that needs to be appreciated was by helping people access healthcare without worrying about their lives and money with an income transfer program.
By Gayatri Yellayi