Coronavirus: Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro ignores his own health officials' advice, hugs supporters

The President of Brazil visibly ignored advice by health experts the world over, and mingled with people in a bakery in the capital without wearing a mask or keeping a safe distance, before pointedly posting a video of the encounters online.

In the video published on Twitter and YouTube, Jair Bolsonaro is seen hugging supporters and posing for pictures inside the bakery and out on the street.

This is not the first time the President goes out and meet with his supporters during the pandemic, challenging the measures recommended by the World Health Organization.

Bolsonaro has compared the new coronavirus to a "little flu" and publicly attacked Governors that introduced quarantine measures, such as in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, two of the country's biggest clusters.

Bolsonaro has increasingly isolated himself politically by maintaining that jobs and the economy must prevail and that Brazil "cannot stop."

His message and public appearances showing him with supporters are at odds with recommendations from Health Minister Luiz Henrique Mandetta.

The minister has garnered support among Brazilians with daily updates on the coronavirus, filled with technical details, best practices and recommendations from authorities such as the WHO.

It also calls for the maintenance of quarantine measures in states that are most badly hit, challenging President Jair Bolsonaro's more laid-back approach to the virus.

The new coronavirus has caused a global pandemic that has sickened at least 1,650,000 people, killed more than 100,000 worldwide, crippled economies and forced restrictions on the movement of millions of people in an effort to stop the virus from spreading further and overwhelming health care systems.

According to the John Hopkins University, Brazil has 18,176 COVID-19 confirmed cases and 957 deaths.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks.

For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.