During a news conference to mark 101 days since the state of emergency was imposed due to Covid-19, Peru’s President Martin Vizcarra recounted his administration’s accomplishments against the pandemic but also acknowledged the current challenges.
Vizcarra told the nation his government has managed to do 1,560,653 tests until Wednesday while it started with a capacity of 500 tests per day. The country’s capacity is now from 15,000 to 20,000 tests per day, according to Vizcarra.
He also acknowledged his government faces what he called “structural problems” to fight the pandemic but responded to his critics saying “they demand us to fix the country’s problems in one hundred days while these problems have not been solved in one hundred years.”
Vizcarra also recognized current problems in the fight against coronavirus in his country such as the lack of oxygen for patients and the need to improve rules for local markets, which have become hubs of infection across the country for example.
His government allowed shopping centers to reopen starting last Monday in order to relieve the economy but the president implored the population not to relax the current social distancing and hygiene rules when going shopping.
“We can’t relax and trust yet, we will only be relaxed when science finds a vaccine or a treatment to neutralize the virus … Please do not let our guard down,” Vizcarra added.
The numbers: Peru has the second-highest number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Latin America, following Brazil. Peru reported 260,810 Covid-19 cases and 8,404 deaths on Tuesday. Peru was one of the first countries in the region to impose a state of emergency and lockdown in order to fight the pandemic.