Although there’s no way to tell whether the SARS-CoV-2 will infect a person living in South America, the pattern of cases, deaths, and recoveries in countries outside of Mainland China suggests that the virus could certainly follow the pattern now being seen in Japan, South Korea, Iran, and Italy.
The key could be whether or not people infected with the virus get to South America. Quarantining people on cruise ships and on airplanes after their arrival at “home” doesn’t appear to have been sufficiently effective.
Cases have now been confirmed in people who had no recognized contact with infected people. This might be because of the ability to transmit the virus when no symptoms are apparent or after the infected person has recovered.