South America Is Now Covid-19 Hot Spot, With Eight Times the World’s Death Rate
Jun 21, 2021 48 secs
SÃO PAULO—While Covid-19 is receding in much of the world, the pandemic is raging in South America, which has just 5% of the world’s population but now accounts for a quarter of the global death toll.

Amid another devastating surge, Brazil surpassed 500,000 this past weekend, with the virus killing seven times as many people per capita each day than in hard-hit India. Colombia and Argentina, which together have 95 million people, are tallying three times as many deaths each day as all of Africa. Of the 10 countries around the world with the highest daily death rates per capita, seven are now in South America.

Collectively, the region’s death rate per capita is eight times the world’s rate.

Several factors explain why: a slow rate of vaccination, the spread of new Covid-19 variants, crowded cities, weak healthcare systems, far higher rates of obesity than in Africa and Asia, and some governments that largely gave up trying to control the virus.

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