Peru More Than Doubles Official Covid Death Toll to 180,000

Peru, which was already one of the world’s hardest-hit countries during the pandemic, updated its official death toll from Covid-19 on Monday, adding more than 110,000 fatalities than previously reported.

A total of 180,764 people have died from coronavirus through May 22, according to a report by a group of experts convened by the government to clarify the real number of victims in the country of some 32 million people. That’s 165% higher than the previous official tally of 68,053 and would place it fifth globally in total deaths after the U.S., Brazil, India and Mexico, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

“The number of deaths from Covid-19 reported today reflect the magnitude of one of the worst health, economic and social crises in our Republican history, and highlights the overwhelming need to strengthen and modernize the Peruvian State,” said the group of experts in a statement.

Peru More Than Doubles Official Covid Death Toll to 180,000

The report comes just days before a runoff election slated for June 6. Since the last election in 2016, Francisco Sagasti -- who is not a candidate -- is the fourth person to hold the presidency after his predecessors were forced out over graft investigations and scandals. Ex-president Martin Vizcarra and other cabinet members were found to have jumped the line to receive vaccines during trials held by China’s Sinopharm late last year.

Peru is behind its peers in Latin America in vaccinations as well. Some 3.8 million shots have been administered, covering just 8% of the population with a first dose and 3.5% considered fully vaccinated, according to Bloomberg’s tracker.

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