Deputy Health Minister Hugo López-Gatell has urged Mexicans not to ease up on safe distance measures during the last 13 days of the national social distancing initiative.
Appearing alongside President López Obrador at his morning news conference on Tuesday, López-Gatell called on citizens to remain in their homes to help stop the spread of the virus, which has infected more than 50,000 people in Mexico and claimed the lives of more than 5,000.
The health official said that it is not appropriate for private citizens nor businesses to relax social distancing measures at this time.
“We’ve now been through 57 days [of social distancing recommendations and restrictions], we’ve got 13 left, 13 extraordinarily important days. That’s the length of two incubation periods, the average length of the isolation period for a person with Covid, the time that the contagiousness of the disease lasts,” López-Gatell said.
“From now until May 30, … stay at home, stay at home, stay at home,” he said.
The deputy minister told Monday night’s coronavirus press briefing that life will not immediately return to normal after the conclusion of the national social distancing initiative.
“Citizens shouldn’t think that we’ll return to normality on June 1, it’s not going to be like that,” he said, reiterating that each state’s readiness to lift restrictions will be determined via a color-coded “stoplight” system.
Presenting the daily technical report on the development of the Covid-19 pandemic, López-Gatell said that confirmed cases had increased to 51,633 after 2,414 new cases were detected on Monday and that deaths had risen to 5,332 with the reporting of 155 additional fatalities.
He said that there are 26,933 suspected coronavirus cases across the country and that more than 177,000 people have now been tested.
About one in five of the confirmed cases – 11,300 – are currently active, while more than 35,000 people have recovered.
Just under 45% of all confirmed cases since the beginning of the pandemic were detected in Mexico City and México state.
There are 2,958 active cases in Mexico City, 713 of which are in Iztapalapa, a sprawling, densely populated borough in the capital’s east that has been hit hard by the pandemic. The borough has more active cases than 30 of Mexico’s 31 states, with only México state, where there are 1,421 active cases, reporting a higher number.
After Mexico City and México state, Tabasco has the third largest outbreak followed by Veracruz and Baja California.
Mexico City also has the highest coronavirus death toll, with 1,381 confirmed fatalities as of Monday.
Twelve states have triple-figure death tolls: Baja California (566); México state (484); Tabasco (310); Sinaloa (299); Quintana Roo (253); Veracruz (243); Chihuahua (193); Puebla (191); Hidalgo (163); Morelos (150); Guerrero (112); and Tlaxcala (101).
In addition to the 5,332 confirmed Covid-19 deaths, 656 are suspected of having been caused by the disease. Mexico’s fatality rate is currently 10.3 per 100 cases based on confirmed cases and deaths, well above the global rate of 6.6.
Only one-third of general and intensive care hospital beds set aside for patients with serious and severe respiratory symptoms are currently occupied in Mexico but in Mexico City, the country’s coronavirus epicenter, 77% of the former and 66% of the latter are in use.