Monday, June 24, 2024

Covid deaths reach 59,000; hospitalizations on rise in Mexico City

Mexico’s official Covid-19 death toll is on the cusp of reaching a figure that the country’s coronavirus czar once said could only be reached in a “catastrophic scenario.”

The federal Health Ministry reported 625 additional Covid-19 deaths on Thursday, increasing the accumulated tally to 59,106.

Deputy Health Minister Hugo López-Gatell said June 4 that total Covid-19 fatalities could reach 60,000 in a “catastrophic scenario.”

At the time, Mexico’s pandemic death toll was just over 12,500 and López-Gatell predicted that it would likely increase to between 30,000 and 35,000.

While the official toll is now nearing 60,000, several independent studies suggest that Mexico is grossly underestimating deaths from the virus that claimed its first victim here in mid-March.

Coronavirus deaths
Coronavirus deaths are set to hit a ‘catastrophic’ level. milenio

The Health Ministry also reported Thursday that the accumulated case tally had increased to 543,806 with 6,775 new cases registered. There are 29,143 active cases while the results of 82,786 tests are not yet known.

More than 1.2 million people have been tested for coronavirus in Mexico since the beginning of the pandemic for a positivity rate of 45%. The rate is extremely high because testing is mainly targeted at people with serious coronavirus-like symptoms.

At Thursday night’s coronavirus press briefing, Director of Epidemiology José Luis Alomía reiterated that new case numbers have declined in recent weeks. But data shows that testing has also declined during the period, which could explain the reduction in new case numbers.

Alomía also said that Covid-19 deaths are on the wane although more than 600 were reported on 15 of the first 20 days of August.

He said 38% of general care hospital beds set aside for coronavirus patients are currently occupied while 33% of those with ventilators are in use.

Nayarit and Nuevo León are the only states with more than 60% of general care hospitals in use while Colima and Nuevo León have the highest occupancy rates for critical care beds, at 56% and 53%, respectively.

coronavirus cases
Confirmed cases are brown, suspected are orange and negative test results are purple. Deaths are shown in black at the base of the chart. The final week shown—No. 32— is August 2-8.ministry of health

Alomía said that the number of coronavirus patients hospitalized across the country has decreased in recent weeks.

However, hospitalizations have increased in Mexico City, Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum said Thursday.

The Mexico City government’s latest Covid-19 report shows that there are currently just under 2,900 coronavirus patients in the capital’s hospitals.

Mexico City has been the country’s coronavirus epicenter since the beginning of the pandemic with almost 90,000 cases detected over the past six months. The capital’s official Covid-19 death toll passed 10,000 on Thursday with 64 additional fatalities reported.

Despite the increase in hospitalizations, Sheinbaum announced Friday that the “orange light” high risk level will remain in place in Mexico City for a ninth consecutive week between August 24 and 30.

Source: Reforma (sp), El Economista (sp) 

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