How Deadly Is COVID-19?

“If one assumes that the number of asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic cases is several times as high as the number of reported cases, the case fatality rate may be considerably less than 1%,” wrote Fauci and his colleagues in the letter.

Assuming this is correct, that means the health consequences of COVID-19 are more akin to severe seasonal influenza, which is associated with a 0.1 percent death rate, or the pandemic influenza outbreaks of 1957 and 1968, according to Fauci et al. These figures are mercifully much lower than the fatality rates of two other notorious coronaviruses, namely SARS (death rate between 9 and 10 percent) and MERS (death rate of 36 percent), according to research published in Nature Reviews Microbiology in 2016.
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