Mexico records 3rd highest daily death numbers

June 17, 2020 GMT

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Even as Mexico announced plans for reopening churches and religious events, the country posted near-record numbers of newly confirmed cases and deaths from COVID-19 on Tuesday.

The Health Department reported that confirmed cases rose by 4,599, the second-highest daily increase to date, to reach an accumulated total of 154,863.

Deaths rose by 730, the third-highest daily confirmation number, after one-day increases of 1,092 and 816 earlier this month. Those death tolls rivaled those of the United States.

Both case and death total — which now stands at 18,310 — are clearly undercounts, because Mexico does very little testing.

Health care professionals now account for about 24% of Mexico’s cases; 32,388 doctors, nurses and technicians have been infected, and 463 have died.

Health officials acknowledged Mexico is on a plateau, with sustained rates of transmission and deaths, with few if any signs of a decrease. Despite that, business are beginning to reopen after mandatory lockdowns due to the coronavirus.

On Tuesday, the Interior Department published guidelines for reopening religious activities and churches, which had been ordered closed. in about half the country, churches will be allowed to open at 25% of capacity; once case numbers and hospital saturation and other indicators fall, that capacity will be allowed to rise to 50%.