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Argentina Coronavirus News Roundup: May 20th

Daily Updates of COVID-19 in Argentina

By | [email protected] | May 20, 2020 10:00pm

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Every evening we at The Bubble pick a few stories in the Argentine media related to the coronavirus outbreak and write a quick summary so you have some idea of what’s happened.


New cases registered today: 475

Total number of cases in Argentina: 9284

Total deaths so far: 403


Argentina Records Record High Number of New Cases (La Nación)

  • On Wednesday, for the second day in a row, Argentina confirmed a new record high number of new detected cases, with 475 in 24 hours
  • 435 of the 475 cases were reported within the city and Province of Buenos Aires, and 35 additional in the Chaco region

Bolsonaro Authorizes Use of Malaria Drugs for Coronavirus Patients (Aljazeera)

  • After recording almost 20,000 new cases over 24 hours, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has recommended the use of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine, common malaria drugs, to treat mild to severe cases of COVID-19, despite limited scientific evidence highlighting their effectiveness 
  • The Brazilian Ministry of Health’s new guidelines require patients to sign a waiver acknowledging they have been informed of potential side effects, including heart and liver dysfunction, when prescribed the treatment 
  • The recommendations come as the nation still lacks any federal quarantine measures to prevent the spread of the virus 

New Symptoms Added to Description of COVID-19 (La Nación)

  • On Wednesday, the World Health Organization (WHO) updated its description of coronavirus symptoms to include “difficulty speaking or moving”
  • The new symptoms are added to the existing list, which includes “fever, dry cough, tiredness, shortness of breath or chest tightness, as well as nasal congestion, headache, conjunctivitis, diarrhea, loss of taste or smell, skin rashes, or color changes in the fingers or toes”

Government Officially Fixes Oil Barrel Prices at US $45 (The Buenos Aires Times)

  • On Tuesday, via presidential decree, President Fernández artificially fixed the reference price of the “barril criollo” at US $45 per barrel for the remainder of the year, regardless of the official market price around the world
  • The government argued that the decision will “defend jobs and levels of output in the sector” and is thought to be protecting efforts to continue the Vaca Muerta shale project  

President Fernández Endorses Introduction of Wealth Tax to Congress (Infobae)

  • It was reported that on Wednesday, President Fernández gave his approval on the presentation of the new “Wealth Tax” to the lower house of congress 
  • The introduction of the bill has been delayed thus far as to not “complicate dialogue with the opposition” during the transition to virtual sessions, though has now been given the “go ahead” by the president 
  • The tax would affect those with wealth over $200 million pesos

Spike in Cases and Deaths in Chile (La Nación)

  • Like its neighboring countries of Peru and Brazil, Chile has experienced a spike in coronavirus deaths and cases in the past 24 hours, with more than 4,000 in 24 hours
  • The new cases bring the total above 50,000 in the nation, of which 544 individuals have died from the virus

Government Considers Imposing Varied Isolation Measure for Vulnerable Neighborhoods in BA (Infobae)  

  • As President Fernández is expected to announce an extension of the mandatory quarantine this weekend, the Minister of Health, Ginés González García, introduced the possibility that the decision will include differentiated measures by neighborhood within the Buenos Aires Province
  • While González García emphasized that the present coronavirus conditions do not allow for an easing of quarantine measures within the city, he presented the possibility of “nuance for vulnerable neighborhoods” in an interview with Infobae as well 

Ministry of Health Intensifies Recommendation for Elderly Citizens to Take Extreme Precautions   (Ministerio de Salud) 

  • As the Ministry of Health reported on Wednesday that 80 percent of those killed by the coronavirus are over 60 years old, officials from the ministry are calling for those 60 years of age or older to fully comply with isolation measures to ensure safety
  • In the daily briefing, Carla Vizzotti, the Secretary of Health Access, added that the recommendations apply not only to this vulnerable population, but to those who “ live with someone who has a condition of risk” as well