As of 10 June 2021, Venezuela has an aggregate of 247,000 Covid-19 cases and 2,764 deaths. Since the virus was first reported in early March 20210, the highest number of infections and deaths have taken place during August and September 2020, with a sharp decline in cases starting in early October 2020. The second ‘wave’ or period of high infections and deaths started in March 2021, and is currently affecting the Venezuelan population, with a 1,460 seven-day average of 1,460 as of 10 June 2021. However, this data has been put questioned by some civil society organizations and health experts, who have denounced the Government’s constant underreporting of the pandemic’s toll since March 2021, reporting only a daily Covid-19 death toll of about 17 victims. According to health experts, there could be 20 times more citizens dying each day from the virus than what the Government publishes, which could mean tens of thousands of fatalities since Covid-19 started.
Regarding Venezuela’s health facilities, the Covid-19 pandemic comes at a time when the Venezuelan health system is facing more than a decade of collapse and is partially inoperative, especially in the public sector. According to recent academic publications, the healthcare system has collapsed and is incapable of responding to the ever-increasing number of patients who require hospitalization. Healthcare personnel, including doctors, nurses, and other first-line health staff, have been substantially affected by the epidemic, leading to the highest mortality rates reported in the Americas.