The first case of COVID-19 reported in Latin America occurred in SÃ£o Paolo, Brazil, on February 25, 2020, in a 61-year-old man who had recently returned from the Lombardy region in Italy. The first cases in the Caribbean region were reported on March 1 in St Martin in a couple who returned from France and in the Dominican Republic in a 61-year-old man visiting from Italy.1,2 By mid-March, there was a substantial surge in cases, resulting in nearly every country in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) reporting COVID-19 (Table 1). These data are reported to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) regional office from national ministries of health and as such may have inherent weaknesses of timing, completeness, and accuracy. However, they do provide insight on trends and hotspots in the region.
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