clearn.png
Sunday March 7th, 2021 9:36PM

Mexico becomes 4th country to hit 100,000 COVID-19 deaths

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico passed the 100,000 mark in COVID-19 deaths Thursday, becoming only the fourth country — behind the United States, Brazil and India — to do so.

José Luis Alomía Zegarra, Mexico’s director of epidemiology, said there were 100,104 confirmed COVID-19 deaths as of Thursday. The milestone comes less than a week after Mexico said it had topped 1 million registered coronavirus cases, though officials agree the number is probably much higher because of low levels of testing.

Mexico's living are bearing the scars of the pandemic along with their lost friends and loved ones. Many surviving coronavirus victims say the psychosis caused by the pandemic is one of the most lasting effects.

Mexico resembles a divided country, where some people are so unconcerned they won’t wear masks, while others are so scared they descend into abject terror at the first sign of shortness of breath.

With little testing being done and a general fear of hospitals, many in Mexico are left to home remedies and relatives’ care. Such is the case in the poverty-stricken Ampliación Magdalena neighborhood on Mexico City’s rough east side, where most people work off-the-books as day laborers at the city’s sprawling produce market.

The busy market was the scene of one of the first big outbreaks in the greater metropolitan area, home to 21 million people, and so early on in the pandemic local undertakers were swamped with corpses.

The local funeral home “looked like a bakery, with people lined up, with hearses lined up,” said community leader Daniel Alfredo López González. The owner of the funeral home told him some people waited to get bodies embalmed for burial while others were in the line to get their relatives’ remains cremated.

The lack of testing — Mexico tests only people with severe symptoms and has performed only around 2.5 million tests in a country of 130 million — the lack of hospitals in many areas and the fear of the ones that do exist, has created a fertile breeding ground for ignorance, suspicion and fear.

López Gónzalez described getting the disease himself. Even though he recovered, the fear was crushing.

“It is a tremendous psychosis. In the end, sometimes the disease itself may not be so serious, but it is for a person’s psyche,” López Gónzalez said. “That is, knowing that you have a disease like this can kill you as bad as the disease itself.”

Public health outreach worker Dulce María López González - Daniel Alfredo's sister - nursed four members of her family through COVID-19, relying on phone-in advice and medications from a doctor who was nursing his own relatives.

Her first brush with the pandemic’s psychological effects were her own fears that her job as a health worker might have exposed her to it.

“I can’t breath,” she remembers thinking. “And I said to myself, no, it is a psychological question.”

She forced herself to calm down, noting: “If I get worked up thinking I have the disease, that I am going to die, then I am going to have a heart attack.”

Her second brush with its effects involved her relatives’ decision to ride out the disease at home. She had to desperately search for ways to get scarce and expensive medical equipment.

“There came a point when I said no, I can’t do it,” López González said.

The final straw was when her husband, spared in the first round of infections, had what appeared to be a panic attack in a taxi, thinking he had been infected and couldn’t breath.

“He started to enter a sort of state of psychosis in which he thought he had the disease, and it probably could have given him a heart attack,” she said.

Still, they were terrified of government hospitals.

“It is really like a cycle of terror,” she noted. “We were afraid to go to a hospital after everything you hear on social media. It was an enormous psychosis.”

But López Gonzalez, whose job involves handing out free surgical masks to residents, has also seen the other side of the psychological maelstrom: those who don’t care.

“I saw this person who I had given a mask to, and I told her she shouldn’t be outside without it,” she recalled. “She told me that no, nothing was going to happen to her. Two weeks later we found out she had died of COVID.”

Mexico’s pointman on the pandemic, Assistant Health Secretary Hugo López-Gatell, bristled when asked about Mexico reaching the 100,000 deaths point.

He criticized the media for “being alarmist” in focusing on the figure, in the same way he has criticized those who suggest the government is undercounting the deaths, those who have questioned the country’s low testing rate or the government’s contradictory and weak advice on using face masks.

“The epidemic is terrible in itself, you don’t have to add drama to it,” said López-Gatell, suggesting some media outlets were focusing on the number of deaths to sell newspapers or spark “political confrontation.”

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP Health, AP World News
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Asian shares mostly climb amid tug of war between hope, fear
Asian shares are mostly rising in muted trading after Wall Street eked out modest gains amid a tug of war between worries about the worsening pandemic in the present and optimism that a vaccine will rescue the economy in the future
9:26PM ( 21 minutes ago )
Mexico becomes 4th country to hit 100,000 COVID-19 deaths
Mexico has passed the 100,000 mark in COVID-19 deaths, becoming only the fourth country _ behind the United States, Brazil and India _ to do so
9:24PM ( 22 minutes ago )
Jake Scott, former Miami safety, Super Bowl MVP, dies at 75
Former NFL safety Jake Scott has died at 75
9:24PM ( 22 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Trump, allies make frantic steps to overturn Biden victory
President Donald Trump and his allies are taking increasingly frantic steps to subvert the results of the 2020 election, including summoning state legislators to the White House as part of a longshot bid to overturn Joe Biden’s victory
8:15PM ( 1 hour ago )
Joe Biden wins Georgia, flipping the state for Democrats
Joe Biden has won Georgia and its 16 electoral votes
7:59PM ( 1 hour ago )
Mossimo Giannulli reports to prison in college bribery case
Fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli has reported to prison to begin serving his five-month sentence for bribing his daughters’ way into college
7:52PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP National News
Anomalies found in data put census deadline in jeopardy
The director of the Census Bureau says irregularities have been found during the numbers-crunching phase of the 2020 census
6:54PM ( 2 hours ago )
Rosalía, Ozuna, Bad Bunny win early Latin Grammys
Spanish singer Rosalía made history when she won album of the year at last year’s Latin Grammys and she continued her winning streak Thursday, picking up three more honors during the pre-ceremony ahead of the 2020 show
6:32PM ( 3 hours ago )
Judge halts federal execution after lawyers contract virus
A federal judge is temporarily blocking the federal government’s plan to execute the first female death row inmate in almost six decades after her attorneys contracted coronavirus visiting her in prison
6:18PM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Online National News
The Latest: Pfizer to seek emergency vaccine approval
Pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and BioNTech will seek emergency government approval for their coronavirus vaccine, as the U.S. aims to begin administering doses by the end of the year
6:28PM ( 3 hours ago )
Biden tells governors he'll help states overcome coronavirus
In a virtual meeting with governors, Joe Biden has expressed concern that President Donald Trump’s unprecedented attempt to block the peaceful transition of power at the White House has hindered the flow of information about programs to fast-track a coronavirus vaccine
4:29PM ( 5 hours ago )
US adult smoking rate looks unchanged, vaping rate higher
The U.S. decline in cigarette smoking could be stalling while the adult vaping rate appears to be rising
3:19PM ( 6 hours ago )
Top General short headlines
WHO chief denies Ethiopia's claim of backing Tigray region
The World Health Organization's Ethiopian director-general is denying the allegation of his own country that he has been lobbying neighboring nations to provide arms and other support to the defiant Tigray region while it clashes with Ethiopia's government
2:19PM ( 7 hours ago )
Ethiopia claims WHO chief is backing Tigray without evidence
Ethiopia’s army chief has accused the head of the World Health Organization, a fellow Ethiopian, of lobbying neighboring countries to provide arms and other support to the defiant Tigray region
12:42PM ( 9 hours ago )
Bosnia doctors appeal for respect of rules amid virus surge
Doctors in Bosnia, one of the hardest hit countries in the Balkans with the new coronavirus, are appealing on the citizens to respect preventive measures and help the ailing health system
12:30PM ( 9 hours ago )
AP Health
The Latest: Fauci wants to 'settle concerns' about vaccine
Infection disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci says “he wants to settle” concerns about a coronavirus vaccine as he returns to the White House podium for the first time in months
5:48PM ( 4 hours ago )
The Latest: EU official: 2 vaccines could be authorized soon
The European Union’s top official sayw two COVID-19 vaccines could receive conditional market authorization as early as the second half of December
5:36PM ( 4 hours ago )
The Latest: Pence offers positive COVID-19 assessment in US
Vice President Mike Pence is offering an upbeat assessment of the status of the coronavirus in the U.S., despite a surge in cases, hospitalizations and more than a quarter of a million deaths
5:04PM ( 4 hours ago )
AP World News
Asian shares mostly climb amid tug of war between hope, fear
Asian shares are mostly rising in muted trading after Wall Street eked out modest gains amid a tug of war between worries about the worsening pandemic in the present and optimism that a vaccine will rescue the economy in the future
9:26PM ( 22 minutes ago )
Jake Scott, former Miami safety, Super Bowl MVP, dies at 75
Former NFL safety Jake Scott has died at 75
9:24PM ( 24 minutes ago )
Georgia hand tally of votes is complete, affirms Biden lead
A hand tally of the ballots cast in the presidential race has been completed
9:07PM ( 41 minutes ago )
The Latest: South Korea leaders urges public to stay at home
South Korea’s prime minister has urged the public to avoid social gatherings and stay at home as much as possible as the country’s coronavirus tally hovered above 300 for a third consecutive day
9:04PM ( 45 minutes ago )
J Balvin, Rosalía, Ozuna win Latin Grammys; Karol G performs
Thirteen-time nominee J Balvin picked up the first award during the live telecast of the 2020 Latin Grammys, and the Colombian superstar has a chance to make history if he wins the top prize, album of the year, later in the show
8:55PM ( 53 minutes ago )