Majority of Brazilians in intensive care are under 40

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The majority of Brazilians suffering from COVID-19 in intensive care are now under 40, the coordinator of a study from the Brazilian Association of Intensive Care (AMIB) revealed on Sunday.

• Read also: All the developments of the pandemic

Those under forty infected with the coronavirus in intensive care, now numbering more than 11,000, became the majority (52.2%) in March, said the coordinator of the AMIB study, the Dr Ederlon Rezende.

They were only 14.6% at the start of the pandemic a year ago, then 45% between September and February, according to the same study.

“This population previously only contracted a milder form of the disease and did not need intensive care,” explained Dr Rezende. “Such an increase for this age group is very significant.”

The UCI project sees several reasons for this.

People over 80 – who now make up just 7.8% of people in intensive care with COVID-19 – are now mostly vaccinated.

In addition, younger people are more exposed, either because they have to work, or because they believe they are less vulnerable, according to the AMIB study.

Finally, the Brazilian variant of the virus, named P1, is according to experts the main cause of the spectacular increase in the number of deaths in March.

“Younger patients, without having had other illnesses, have more serious cases upon arrival at intensive care,” said Dr Rezende.

The number of COVID-19 patients who end up in intensive care without having had other illnesses reached in March almost a third of the total (30.3%), according to the study, while the number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care reached a record 58.1%.

Brazil recorded 66,500 deaths from COVID-19 in March, more than double the previous record of July 2020.

More than 351,000 people have died in a little over a year in total as a result of this disease in Brazil, which has a population of 212 million, a toll only exceeded by the United States.