BUENOS AIRES, May 27. /TASS/. South, Central and North America have become the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, Director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) Carissa Etienne told reporters.
Noting that more than 2.4 million confirmed cases and over 143,000 deaths have made the region the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, Etienne said the real number of infected persons could be even higher.
"We are particularly concerned that the number of new cases reported last week in Brazil was the highest for a seven-day period, since the outbreak began," she said. "Both Peru and Chile are also reporting a high incidence." she said.
For most countries in the region, "now is not the time to relax restrictions or scale back preventive strategies," she added.
According to the US-based Johns Hopkins University, the US remains the hardest-hit country with over 1.6 million confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus, followed by Brazil with some 374,000 cases. Other American nations that have reported a high number of cases are Peru (123,900 cases.), Canada (88,000), Chile (almost 80,000) and Mexico (71,000).