The Latest: Mexico hits another record for COVID-19 cases

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Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

City worker Carlos Ruiz gives instruction to a COVID-19 patient after delivering a tank of oxygen to her home in the Iztapalapa borough of Mexico City, Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. The city offers free oxygen refills for COVID-19 patients. (AP Photo/Marco Ugarte)

Mexico posted a record spike in coronavirus cases on Friday, with 21,366 newly confirmed infections, about double the daily rate of increase just a week ago. The country also recorded 1,106 more deaths.

It was unclear if the spike was due to the presence of the U.K. virus variant, of which only one case has so far been confirmed in a visiting British citizen.

The country has now seen almost 1.61 million total infections and has seen registered over 139,000 deaths so far in the pandemic.

The country’s extremely low testing rate means that is an undercount, and official estimates suggest the real death toll is closer to 195,000. So little testing is done that 8% of all those who got a test later died during recent weeks; normally, only people with severe symptoms are tested..

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THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

Global deaths reach 2 million from coronavirus. Pfizer temporarily reduces European deliveries of vaccine. Desperate effort to bring oxygen supplies to the Brazilian rainforest’s biggest city. City in northern China builds 3,000-unit quarantine facility to handle anticipated overflow of COVID-19 patients.

U.S. President-elect Joe Biden has unveiled $1.9 trillion plan for tackling the coronavirus pandemic and provide 100 million vaccines in 100 days. Spain insists it can stay open and still beat the virus while much of Europe is increasingly locked down.