Brazil confirms first Latin American coronavirus case

Brazil confirms first Latin American coronavirus case
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Brazil confirmed the first case of coronavirus in Latin America on Wednesday. 

Brazil’s health minister held a press conference announcing the country's first case of the virus, a 61-year-old man who recently returned after traveling in Italy.

“We will now see how this virus behaves in a tropical country in the middle of summer, how its behavior pattern will be,” Luiz Henrique Mandetta said at the conference, according to The Associated Press

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The confirmation of the case in Brazil comes as the country is in the midst of Carnival, a popular festival that draws large crowds in close quarters. 

The patient in Brazil lives in São Paulo, had recently traveled for work to northern Italy and sought medical help after experiencing a fever, cough and a sore throat, according to The New York Times

Italy has been the hardest-hit country in Europe from the virus, with Italian officials reporting 374 people infected across nine regions of the country. The northern region of Lombardy is the most impacted, with 250 cases. 

Seven more countries in Europe reported cases of the virus Wednesday, reportedly all with links to the outbreak in Italy. 

Globally, 80,980 people have reportedly been infected by the virus that originated in China and nearly 3,000 have died.