Concern grows in Brazil about the advance of the coronavirus. This Wednesday, the health authorities reported that In the last 24 hours, 888 new deaths were registered, and 19,951 new cases, a record number in the country since the start of the pandemic.
With these figures, the total number of deaths amounts to 18,859, and the number of positive cases to 291,579.
The epicenter of the pandemic in the South American nation persists in the state of San Pablo, where there are 69,859 infected and 5,363 dead.
In this way, Brazil is consolidated as the third country with the most infections in the world, behind only the United States (1,548,646) and Russia (308,705), according to data provided by Johns Hopkins University.
Amid criticism of its management against the pandemic, the government of President Jair Bolsonaro recommended Wednesday the use of chloroquine to treat patients with mild symptoms of COVID-19.
Guided by the head of state, the Ministry of Health published a new protocol on the treatment of patients with coronavirus, which extends the possible use of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine in mild cases, Despite the fact that the efficacy of these antimalarials has not yet been demonstrated in the fight against the virus.
"A hope, as reported by many who used it," Bolsonaro said Wednesday, a day after his US counterpart, Donald Trump, announced that he will continue to take hydroxychloroquine because he is "curious" about its effects.
Given the studies that reveal possible side effects of this drug, the Brazilian president said that, as part of democracy, "Nobody is forced to take chloroquine", but he will not have a conscience charge if someone wanted to take it and could not.
"Who knows, right? It may be a placebo, which did not help, but it could also be that within two years they will say that it really worked, ”he said during a conversation with journalist Magno Martins.
Bolsonaro has received much criticism for his defense of this drug, even within his government team. Recently, the former Minister of Health, Nelson Teich, resigned because he disagreed with the use of chloroquine to treat the disease.
Your predecessor in office, Luiz Henrique Mandetta, who fell out of favor after his pronounced differences with Bolsonaro on how to manage the health crisis, warned a few days ago in an interview for Folha de Sao Paulo of the risk involved in treating COVID-19 patients with this malaria medication.
Mandetta explained that, after using it in "seriously ill patients who were in hospitals", studies revealed that 33 percent of them had to stop treatment "because it caused arrhythmias that could lead to respiratory arrest."
Last April, in Brazil they stopped a trial with that drug prematurely after the death of 11 patients.
The study, which was sponsored by the Brazilian state and its preliminary results were published on the scientific portal medRxiv, involved 81 hospitalized patients in the city of Manaus. About half of the people undergoing the treatment received a dose of 450 milligrams of chloroquine twice a day for five days. The rest, meanwhile, were prescribed a dose greater than 600 milligrams for 10 days.
Within three days, scientists began to notice cardiac arrhythmias in patients taking the highest dose. On the sixth day of the trial, 11 patients died, prompting the researchers to immediately end the tests.
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