42.3 Overall Score

Brazil

  • 26.1 Public Health
    Directives
  • 23.4 Financial
    Response
  • 76 Fact-Based
    Communication
  • 26.1 Public Health
    Directives
  • 23.4 Financial
    Response
  • 76 Fact-Based
    Communication

Brazil scores near the median, primarily due to its poor public health policies, especially its very low levels of testing, coupled with President Bolsonaro’s reliance on misinformation about the virus.

Pre-COVID Conditions

Despite relatively wide access to healthcare services, Brazil’s low GDP per capita, substantial inequality, and lack of hospital beds have presented barriers to its pandemic strategy.

  • Debt/GDP ratio 87%
  • GDP/capita $17,016
  • Gini coefficient (out of 100) 53.9
  • Infant mortality rate (out of 1,000 live births) 13
  • Healthcare access score (out of 100) 64.9
  • Hospital beds/1,000 People 15.3

Government Response

Select a data point for more information
(Data points represent policy level as of Aug 1.)
26.1

Public Health Directives

Brazil is among the worst countries for public health policy, owing heavily to its minimal emergency healthcare spending, limted testing, and lax lockdown.

  • Stay at home order 1
  • Public gathering restrictions 4
  • School closings 3
  • Public event cancellations 2
  • Testing policy 2
  • Emergency healthcare investments/capita $28.04
  • Travel restrictions 4
  • Tests/1,000 people 0.2
  • Contact tracing 0
23.4

Financial Response

Brazil’s financial response is characterized by relatively weak income support and a minimal stimulus package; even with the government authorizing a monthly $102 payment for informal workers, many were unable to receive the funds.

  • Financial stimulus as share of GDP 11.8%
  • Income support 1
  • Debt forebearance 1
76

Fact-Based Communication

President Bolsonaro has perpetuated misinformation about the coronavirus, including comparing it to a "mild flu" and claiming that social distancing and mask-wearing are not effective, but Brazil has not limited press freedom with respect to COVID-19.

  • Reliance on science/fact based information 2
  • Press freedom 0

COVID-19 Status as of Aug 1

Brazil has one of the highest rates of coronavirus cases, likely due to negligible health directives, poor public health response, and weak capacity before the virus hit; Brazil may only be testing its sickest people, as shown by their high positivity rate.

  • Total deaths 92,475
  • Death rate per 100K 435.1
  • Total cases 2,662,485
  • Cases per 100K 12,526
  • Percent of positive tests NO DATA
Case Trend Line
Daily cases Level 1 Lockdown Level 2 Lockdown
Date Status New Cases/1M
1 Jun 10 Businesses start reopening in São Paulo 123.74
2 Jun 11 Malls start reopening in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro 126.62

Differentiating Factors

  • Favelas hit exceptionally hard: Informal employment and overcrowding have hindered low-income Brazilians' ability to socially distance. In Rio, COVID-19 patients in the favelas are dying at three times the rate of patients from the city's wealthiest district. Read More
  • Chaos in the cabinet undermining response: Bolsonaro's cabinet has been destabilized, and public trust undermined, as two successive Health Ministers have either resigned or been fired for publicly disagreeing with the President over pandemic response. Read More
  • Suppression of COVID-19 data: Communication has been a major failure of the Brazilian government. In early June, the government announced it would stop publishing COVID-related data, prompting intervention by the Supreme Court. Since then, a coalition of media outlets have been compiling and publishing their own data, doubting the accuracy of the official statistics. Read More
Compared with Other Western Hemisphere Countries
  • 69.5
    Argentina 185,360
    Cases
    4,101
    Per 1M
    3,466
    Deaths

    Argentina’s relatively strong policy score is mainly due to its strong political response, characterized by clear, fact-based communication and regular press briefings by President Fernandez.

  • 42.3
    Brazil 2,662,485
    Cases
    12,526
    Per 1M
    92,475
    Deaths

    Brazil scores near the median, primarily due to its poor public health policies, especially its very low levels of testing, coupled with President Bolsonaro’s reliance on misinformation about the virus.

  • 77.7
    Canada 116,298
    Cases
    3,081
    Per 1M
    8,935
    Deaths

    Canada’s relatively strong score, due to a generous financial response and a reliance on fact-based communications, is hurt by a relaxed lockdown, poor contact tracing, and little emergency healthcare spending.

  • 27.7
    United States 4,562,037
    Cases
    13,783
    Per 1M
    153,314
    Deaths

    The United States’ policy has been relatively weak, given the federal government’s limited use of facts and science, limited emergency healthcare spending, and limited debt relief.

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New Zealand

Statistics and government response factors available on each country profile include:

Pre-COVID Conditions:

  • Debt to GDP ratio
  • Infant mortality rates
  • Hospital beds per 1,000 people
  • Gini coefficients measuring inequality
  • Health access and quality

COVID-19 Public Health Directives:

  • Stay-at home orders
  • School-closing policy
  • Public-gathering restrictions
  • Cancellation of public events
  • Testing policy and rates per 1,000 people
  • Emergency healthcare spending per capita
  • Travel restrictions
  • Contact tracing

COVID-19 Financial Response:

  • Stimulus package as a share of GDP
  • Income support
  • Debt-forbearance

Public Communications:

  • Instances of misinformation by leadership
  • Limitations on press freedom, censorship

Current/Historic In-Country COVID-19 Status:

  • Death rates per 1 million
  • Case rates per 1 million