Australia reported its first coronavirus fatality in more than a month this week — stoking fears of a second wave.
A man in his 80s died of the virus overnight on Tuesday in Victoria, Australia’s second most populous state, officials said Wednesday.
Victoria reported 20 overnight cases, its chief health officer Brett Sutton told reporters in Melbourne Wednesday, bringing the state tally to nearly 1,900 — including 17 reported cases Tuesday and 16 the day before.
“When we get additional cases, there will be a risk of people dying or [being] at risk of further cases being hospitalized and going to intensive care,” Sutton said. “That’s why we need to get on top of numbers.”
A total of 241 cases in the state have been identified as community transmission — eight more than the day before, officials said Wednesday.
Victoria requested help from the Australian Defense Force to keep the numbers at bay, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation reported.
The state’s government requested 300 ADF personnel, mainly medical professionals, for logistical support including helping with hotel quarantines and working in hotspot areas, according to the report.
Up to this point, Australia has kept its numbers relatively low — with 7,521 cases and 103 deaths overall, Johns Hopkins University statistics show.
Meanwhile, coronavirus-related deaths in Latin America and the Caribbean have surged past 100,000, with Brazil, now the second-hardest hit country, accounting for more than half of the fatalities, according to the U.S. News & World Report.
Medical workers at a COVID-19 testing site located in a shopping center carpark in Melbourne.Getty Images
By Tuesday evening, the total number of reported COVID-19 deaths in 33 Latin American and Caribbean countries was at least 100,145, according to the report.
Brazil accounts for 52,645 of those deaths, second only to the US with 121,279, Johns Hopkins data shows. The country has reported a total of 1,145,906 cases, also the second-highest, behind the US with 2,348,956.
Mexico has the second-highest death toll in the region, at 23,377. It has reported 191,410 coronavirus cases.
Peru — with the sixth-highest number of cases in the world, 260,810 — has the third-highest death toll in the region, at 8,404. The country, which recently received a donation of 250 ventilators from the US, has been under a mandatory lockdown for 100 days.
Chile has reported 250,767 cases and 4,505 deaths. Colombia, which has extended its quarantine until July 15 as its cases continue to climb, has reported 73,760 cases and 2,524 deaths.
Worldwide, 9,295,365 cases and 478,289 deaths had been reported by Wednesday afternoon.
With Post wires