The Ethiopian politician and Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, claimed in a press conference in early March that the fatality rate for the coronavirus was many multiples that of the fatality rate of the common flu. This egregiously false premise has led to the greatest panic in world history.
The Director General of the WHO spoke on March 3, 2020 and shared this related to the coronavirus:
While many people globally have built up immunity to seasonal flu strains, COVID-19 is a new virus to which no one has immunity. That means more people are susceptible to infection, and some will suffer severe disease.
Globally, about 3.4% of reported COVID-19 cases have died. By comparison, seasonal flu generally kills far fewer than 1% of those infected.
This statement led to the greatest panic in world history as the media all over the world shared and repeated that the coronavirus was many, many times more deadly than the common flu.
The problem is the statement is false. It was not accurate!
We reported yesterday, that the coronavirus fatality rate reported by the media was completely inaccurate and the actual rate is les than the flu – media lying again. The false reporting of the coronavirus fatality rate of 3.4% in the media started with the statements made by the WHO in early March.
Here’s a summary of the analysis proving the Director General’s statement was very misleading and materially false:
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1. Estimates have been made about the fatality rate of the coronavirus.
Often times estimates have to be made because data is just not yet available. These estimates usually involve obtaining information that is available and making estimates on what is not. We cannot tell the future but we can make educated guesses based on information available. This is what has been done with the coronavirus because this type of virus has apparently never been seen before.
2. Sometimes estimates are reasonable and sometimes they are wrong, way off.
The point is that whenever estimates are made of large unknown values they are always wrong because no one can tell the future. Sometimes estimates end up close and sometimes they are not and sometimes they are way off.
3. The current estimate for the coronavirus fatality rate is about 3.4%.
The estimates used most often is from the WHO based on the Director General’s comments. The WHO estimates the mortality rate of the coronavirus to be around 3.4%:
The World Health Organization (WHO) has estimated the mortality rate from Covid-19 is about 3.4%. That is higher than seasonal flu and is cause for concern – but even if it is correct, more than 96% of people who become infected with the coronavirus will recover.
4. The same rate for the flu is 10% (but the media tells you it’s .1%).
As The Gateway Pundit reported earlier, according to CDC numbers, in the US in the 2019-2020 flu season, there were 222,000 confirmed cases of the flu from testing and an estimated 36 million flu cases in the United States. There were 22,000 confirmed deaths from the flu.
Note that the number of deaths and confirmed cases (through testing) of the flu in the US are based on actual data. The number of individuals who contracted the flu is an estimate. There is no way to know who had the flu in the US because many cases are not severe and people do not have a test done to confirm they had the flu. They believe their symptoms are minor and go on with their normal lives thinking they had a cold or something similar. Because of this, the CDC estimates and they estimated 36 million people had the flu in this past flu season.
The rate of the number of individuals who died from the flu to the number of individuals who were estimated to have had the flu is .1% (22,000 / 36 million). This is an estimate and the amount used above by the Director General of the WHO.
However, the rate of individuals who died from the flu to the number of individuals who were confirmed to have had the flu is around 10% (22,000/ 222,000). This is based on actual data similar to the rate for the coronavirus above.
5. Actual results for the coronavirus are lower than the flu.
Based on the above numbers, the actual fatality rate for those who were confirmed to have had the coronavirus is 3.4%.
The actual rates for those who were confirmed to have had the flu are around 10%.
The actual data shows that the fatality rate for those who had the flu (10%) is 6% higher than for those with the coronavirus (3.8%).
6. Current estimates between the flu and the coronavirus are not comparing ‘apples to apples’.
The fatality rate that is commonly referred to in the media for the coronavirus is 3.4% from the WHO. This number is based on confirmed cases of people with the coronavirus.
The flu fatality rate provided by the CDC of .1% includes an estimate of individuals who had the flu (36,000,000). This rate includes an estimate of all people with the flu, most who were not tested for the flu.
The fatality rate for the coronavirus does not include those who had the coronavirus but were not confirmed. This is why the flu fatality rate is .1% and the coronavirus fatality rate is 3.4%!
The two rates are like comparing apples to oranges. By doing so the coronavirus fatality rate is way overstated when compared to the flu and the WHO and the media has created a worldwide crisis and panic by reporting these rates simultaneously!
The coronavirus is not more fatal than the flu based on current data. It is much less fatal than the flu based on current data.
7. Those most at risk from the coronavirus are the elderly and sick (similar to the flu).
Similar to the flu, those most at risk of dying from the coronavirus are the elderly and the sick. The average age for those who died from the coronavirus in Italy is 81 years old. This is consistent around the world. There have been no known fatalities for any children 10 and under.
The sick are also at a higher risk similar to the flu. Current data shows that if you have no pre-existing conditions, your fatality rate if you contract the coronavirus is .9% (and what proportion of these cases are the elderly).