By Bruno Kelly and Gabriel Araujo MANAUS (Reuters) – Shirlene Morais Costa died Monday at her home in the northern Brazilian city of Manaus, likely the latest victim of a devastating new wave of COVID-19 that has returned to this secluded city deep in the Amazon rainforest (NASDAQ :). The 53-year-old woman came to the hospital with a cough and fever, both symptoms of the coronavirus, but was sent home, according to her stepfather, Esteliano Lopes Filho, 74. “Her death was quick … We called the ambulance, but it only came after she was dead,” he said. “We are seeing death after death … It really is a terrible calamity.” Brazil is home to the second outbreak of The world’s deadliest coronavirus after the United States, and Manaus was one of the first Brazilian cities to crack under a spiral of deaths and cases from the first wave of the pandemic last year. So many were infected that some scientists thought the city of 2 million people could have come close to herd immunity. But that projection has turned out to be quite skewed. The state of Amazonas, where nearly 6,000 people have died from COVID-19, is now experiencing a devastating second wave that is leading to emergency services to the limit. Many people, like Morais Costa, die at home. Beds for patients with COVID-19 in the state reached an occupancy rate of over 98% this week, according to data s of the department of health of the state of Amazonas. Occupancy in temporary facilities that provide care to critical patients for their subsequent referral to other points of the health network was 131%. There are currently 1,391 hospitalized COVID-19 patients in the state, plus another 603 people hospitalized with suspected cases, the data shows. Last week, refrigerated containers were placed outside of Manaus’s main hospitals for the first time since the peak of the pandemic in April. The containers are being used to store corpses, as the city’s health and burial services are once again overwhelmed.
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