Virus deaths in Brazil top 5,000

Brazil, the South American country worst-hit by the coronavirus pandemic, has registered more than 5,000 deaths from COVID-19, the health ministry announces, pushing the toll above that of China.

A record 474 deaths were recorded in the last 24 hours, with the number of infections rising to 71,886, the ministry says.

China, where the virus first emerged before spreading across the world, has recorded about 4,600 deaths.

The ministry says Brazil’s toll could be higher than Tuesday’s official figure of 5,107, as the causes of 1,156 further deaths are under investigation.

Experts believe the overall number of COVID-19 cases could be 12 to 15 times higher, due to a large number of undetected cases given the lack of testing availability across the country’s 210 million population.


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