The COVID-19 pandemic has brought Brazil to its knees, but Uruguay and Costa Rica appear to have successfully stopped the virus in its track.
Moreover, both countries are developing medical equipment on their own to lessen their dependency on foreign countries at this moment of the global crisis.
As of Wednesday, May 27, Uruguay had reported 800 coronavirus cases, with 22 fatalities. In Costa Rica, there are more than 900 people infected with the virus, but the Central American country reported barely 10 deaths due to the pandemic.
Low population density and law-abiding citizens are the factors playing in favor of Uruguay, say, analysts. Unlike Mexico and Brazil, the Uruguayan government acted quickly, closing its borders and urging its citizens to self-quarantine at home.
What was far more noticeable was that Uruguay ordered all schools closed and declared a health emergency hours after four of its citizens tested positive in the second week of March. As a result, the so-called ‘community transmission” of the virus never took place.
Throughout April, there were hardly any Uruguayans visiting cafes, theatres, and shopping malls, the kind of places where the virus is transmitted easily, according to AFP.
In Costa Rica, private companies stood by the government, helping it to mitigate the crisis, with many of them paying generously into the country’s pandemic relief fund.
Companies operating in free trade zones alone contributed more than US$1.1 million, according to the country’s investment promotion agency CINDE.
Chipmaker Intel Corp, for example, helped the government leverage the power of data science to keep track of the virus.