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Chart: COVID-19 Testing, Recovery, and Mortality Rates in Latin America

May 20, 2020

What countries in Latin America are conducting the most COVID-19 tests? Where is the recovery rate highest? Which country has the highest rate of cases per inhabitants? (It's not Brazil.) We break down the numbers each country reported as of mid-May.
We put together a bunch of numbers about COVID-19 testing, recovery, and mortality rates. What's one observation we can make? Cross-country comparisons are difficult, since myriad factors and public policies affect the numbers in different ways.

Officials in São Paulo confirmed Latin America’s first case of COVID-19 on February 26. By mid-May, a clearer picture emerged of how the pandemic is evolving in each country. While the number of cases continues to climb across the board, mortality and recovery rates vary greatly.

Cross-country comparisons are difficult, since myriad factors and public policies affect the numbers in different—or even similar—ways. A high recovery rate might be an indication of a robust public health system (Costa Rica), but it could also be reflective of low testing (Mexico). Some countries have high numbers and a low testing rate (Brazil), while others have high numbers because of concerted testing efforts (Ecuador). And most expect the Maduro administration—which last reported a virus-related death on April 20—is dramatically underreporting cases.

Here is a snapshot of where coronavirus testing, recovery, and mortality rates in countries in the region stand as of May 15.