Brazilian first lady Michelle Bolsonaro tests positive for COVID-19

Weeks after Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro announced he had tested positive for the coronavirus and was prescribed a treatment regimen including hydroxychloroquine, an update on Thursday revealed that his wife had also contracted it, as reported by The Hill.

While Brazil’s president has reportedly recovered and now tests negative, first lady Michelle Bolsonaro is apparently still infected.

“A state of good health”

The news came on the heels of her appearance at an event in Brasilia where she spoke about an initiative to help women in indigenous and rural communities.

It also coincided with an announcement by the nation’s science and technology minister. Marcos Ponte became the fifth member of Bolsonaro’s administration to contract the virus.

In its statement regarding the first lady’s health, Brazil’s presidential residence — known as the Planalto Palace — said she would receive the appropriate treatment from medical staff, according to NPR.

“She is in a state of good health and will follow all established protocols,” the statement continued.

While the nation’s president has largely downplayed the severity of the pandemic and suggested concerns about its impact on society were “exaggerated,” he has nevertheless issued a mandate requiring all Brazilians to wear face masks while near others.

COVID-19 hits Brazil hard

His actions during the news conference in which he announced his diagnosis led to a lawsuit by the Brazilian Press Association, which alleges that he backed away from them and removed his mask in an apparent effort to demonstrate his resiliency.

Notably, his wife had her face covered when addressing those gathered to hear her remarks on Wednesday.

Despite Bolsonaro’s efforts to diminish COVID-19’s toll, data compiled by Johns Hopkins University showed that the country has more than 2.61 million confirmed cases and more than 91,000 deaths attributed to the virus as of Friday.

He has still urged the nation’s citizens to return to normal life wherever possible, lifting bans on international travelers that had been in place for the past four months, with some limitations.

As world leaders learn more about this novel virus, they continue to press forward largely through trial and error. Regardless of their views on her husband’s leadership, people around the world are wishing a speedy recovery for Michelle Bolsonaro and all of the Brazilians currently battling the illness.

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