Peru triples official COVID-19 death toll after concerns of undercount

Peru triples official COVID-19 death toll after concerns of undercount
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Peru has tripled its total coronavirus death toll to more than 180,000 after a government review revealed that officials had undercounted COVID-19 fatalities.

According to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, Peru now has the highest coronavirus death rate per capita, with more than 500 fatalities per 100,000 people.

Hungary previously had the worst death rate per capita at roughly 300 per 100,000 people.


While Brazil currently has the highest total coronavirus death toll in Latin America, Peru’s per capita death figure is more than double that of Brazil, according the data.

Peru Prime Minister Violeta Bermudez said during a Monday press conference aired by CNN affiliate TV Peru when announcing the findings of the government review that the updated figures were recommended by a panel made up of Peruvian and international experts.

"It [is] our duty to make the updated information public, not only as part of our commitment to transparency, but also to comply with our obligations as a State," Bermudez said.

Health Minister Oscar Ugarte said Monday that Peru would work to improve its methodology in collecting COVID-19 data "to have a daily figure which more closely reflects the reality of what is happening with the pandemic in our country,” according to CNN.

The updated data comes as the state of COVID-19 continues to worsen in Peru, with hospitals overcrowded and demand for oxygen outpacing supply, Reuters reported.

Peru last month extended a state of emergency and nationwide lockdown until the end of June amid the immense strain on the country’s health care sector.


U.S. Secretary of State Antony BlinkenAntony BlinkenKim says North Korea needs to be 'prepared' for 'confrontation' with US The Senate just passed the next Apollo program Young Turks founder on Democratic establishment: 'They lie nonstop' MORE on Tuesday during his first visit to Latin America said that the Biden administration would be donating millions of coronavirus vaccine doses to the region and elsewhere around the world.

“Sometime in the next week to two weeks we will be announcing the process by which we will distribute those vaccines,” Blinken said in a news conference from Costa Rica.

The move followed increasing pressure on the U.S. and other countries to share their vaccine supply with some of the countries hardest hit by the pandemic, which have not been able to access doses as easily as wealthier nations.