STK - Letter to the Editor

I did an analysis of the risk we face from the COVID-19 virus, using publicly available data. While there is not space here for details, I do want to share the results. Most of the data was obtained from www.coronavirus.jhu.edu/ and www.cdc.gov.

As of 3/15/2020, the number of cases of COVID-19 globally stood at 169,316. The global population is 7.6 billion. Within the USA, there were 3,734 cases. If not for President Trump's actions beginning in early February with stopping flights from China, we would have many, many more by now.

But Really, How Bad Is It?

I analyzed several sets of data and found China's experience especially useful. It shows a mortality rate of approximately 4,000 deaths per 100,000 cases. The USA annual flu season mortality rate is approximately 85 deaths per 100,000 cases.

Analysis based on CDC data for a normal flu season: if the COVID-19 virus is allowed to run its natural course, 890,000 people would be expected to die in the USA from this disease in the next 6 months, maybe more. This is not your typical flu. It is approximately 47 times more deadly than the two main strains of seasonal flu combined. Recovery is measured in weeks, not days. And, there are still many unknowns as to how this virus will affect us in years to come.

Don't take it lightly. Be part of the solution.

BY THADDEUS SPEED, Eagle Mountain

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