“Brazil is at a grim tipping point. … Unless and until the government takes sustained and enforced measures to slow transmission, the nation will continue its tragic upward trajectory of infections and deaths,” Murray said.
As Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has continued to downplay the seriousness of the health crisis, Latin America’s largest nation has tallied nearly 1.2 million cases and 53,830 deaths.
Transmission could be cut in half in communities where people are wearing masks when leaving their homes, according to the IHME.
“Increased testing and use of masks are important tools in reducing the toll of this pandemic in Mexico, in addition to keeping healthy distance,” said Dr. Rafael Lozano, director of Health Systems at IHME.
If mask use rises to 95%, Brazil could see as few as 147,431 deaths and Mexico’s forecasted death toll could fall to 79,652, the researchers said.