The Region of the Americas accounts for majority of new COVID-19 deaths worldwide

COVID-19 testing in Argentina

Washington D.C., September 1, 2020 (PAHO) – The Region of the Americas accounted for 64% of the new deaths reported globally over the prior two months, numbering more than 213,000 new deaths, though it only makes up about 13% of the global population, according to a new Epidemiological Update published by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).

The epidemiological update notes that the majority of the new deaths globally were reported by Brazil, with 19%, the United States of America, with 16%; India, comprising 13%; and Mexico, making up 12%.

The number of cases worldwide has increased by 158%, with some 14 million additional cases, since the PAHO report published June 23. Deaths rose by 72%, comprising some 300,000 additional deaths.

In the Region of the Americas, “while COVID-19 cases seem to have steadied in some countries and territories at the national level (e.g. the United States and Canada), daily notification rates are now accelerating in other countries and territories, many of which are experiencing larger outbreaks for the first time since the onset of the pandemic in the Region (e.g. countries and territories in the Caribbean subregion),” the PAHO update noted.

However, daily notifications of cases in the United States of America and Brazil are trending downwards, the report said. In Central America, cases and deaths increased by over 300% since June, (cases went from 61,058 to 266,000 and deaths rose from 1,580 to 7,203).In the Caribbean there was a 230% increase in cases (reaching more than 100,000 new cases) and a 123% increase in deaths (reaching 1,384 deaths) compared with what they reported in June. South America has reported more than 5.6 million cases and 186,000 deaths report, nearly three times the number of cases and twice the deaths since last June.

In a press briefing this week, PAHO Director Carissa F. Etienne said that rising numbers of cases signal an urgent need to implement public health measures to slow the spread of COVID-19 such as contact tracing, social distancing, sheltering in place and limits on public gatherings. “We can’t stop all transmission, but if countries stay vigilant and expand testing and surveillance, they can better identify spikes in cases and act quickly to contain them before they spread out of control,” she said.