Venezuela added this Sunday its third fatal victim by COVID-19 with the death of a 60-year-old man, while the number of infections was 129, reported the Minister of Communication, Jorge Rodríguez.
According to the official, the man presented symptoms related to the new coronavirus since the end of last February, when he went to private clinics and was diagnosed with the common flu.
“When he already presented an extremely serious condition, he presented to one of the (public) hospitals,” Rodríguez said in a speech broadcast on state television VTV.
“He arrived in the last stages,” he added of the man’s conditions. He lived in a poor neighborhood in northern Caracas and worked as a taxi driver.
Rodríguez specified that the victim suffered from diabetes as a “base disease” and had a tobacco habit. His death occurred after the failure of several organs early Sunday morning.
With this death, the case fatality rate of COVID-19 in Venezuela reaches 2.3%, a number that, Rodríguez noted, is “well below that seen in the rest of the world.”
Using this death as an example, Rodríguez again defended the measures of severe restriction on displacement that the government of President Nicolás Maduro launched two weeks ago.
“Quarantine is the only mechanism that is determined to work to flatten the infection curve and decrease the occurrence of new cases,” he said.
In addition, he warned that in Colombia and Brazil, two countries that share extensive borders with Venezuela, COVID-19 infections increase “exponentially”, since he announced that rapid tests will be carried out on all people entering from these nations.
Rodríguez also reiterated that in Venezuela the contagion curve tends to flatten, but did not say when the quarantine could be lifted, which this Monday will enter its third week.
Yesterday the opposition leader Juan Guaidó said he had read the report of a group of experts that warns of possible massive contagions and the death of thousands of people in Venezuela by COVID-19, in the midst of the serious crisis that the country is already going through.
To tackle these possible deaths, Guaidó proposed that the country’s military and politicians form a “national emergency government”, without Maduro and some of his closest collaborators, and request multilateral funds to finance some 1,200 million dollars.
Rodríguez said nothing about this proposal.