The daily scare about the coronavirus is ramping up fear among the masses. The typical flu season sees tens of thousands die from the annual flu virus. Yet, no publicity. Many more are hospitalized each year because of the annual flu virus. Again, no publicity. Is the coronavirus making a political statement? I don’t know.
I think it is quite possible that the coronavirus can infect nearly every American. The virus is contagious with no symptoms. Unless you live in a cave and never see anyone, it is likely that a perfectly healthy-looking person can infect you. A week later, you have symptoms. And, you may never know who infected you.
Yes, the death rate is higher than the annual flu. Reports I read today support the annual death rate at 0.1% for the influenza virus. Initial death rates from China indicated that the death rate was around 2%, then it was increased to 3%, then to 3.4%. It seems to have settled at the 3% level.
Most American fatalities (and worldwide) appear to take the lives of those elderly with health problems. If you are not over 60 years of age and you don’t have respiratory problems, the probable death rate is 0.2-0.3% – double or triple the annual influenza fatality rate.
The annual influenza outbreak in the United States is moderated a bit by past experiences with the flu viruses. Once we have had the flu, our bodies develop an immunity to a particular strain. As the strains mutate, we still have some residual protection.
The coronavirus is a new virus. No one has natural immunity due to previous exposure to it. As such, everyone is susceptible to contracting the coronavirus, whether you quarantine yourself for two weeks or attend a thousand-person event with your favorite singer, athletic team, or other entertainment events. You can be quarantined for two or more weeks, get money out of an ATM machine and get infected from the person using it just before you arrived.
I am not trying to paint a scene of doom and gloom, but the media is giving us a near Armageddon reporting of how bad this virus is to the general public. Yes, 99% might survive the coronavirus. Probably more than that. Yet, we lose tens of thousands yearly to influenza and other viruses.
It is never fortunate that someone dies from a disease. The coronavirus appears to be most lethal to the elderly and those with challenged immune systems. They should be the ones we protect the most.
I heard today that some nursing homes are not allowing visitors – a step in the right direction!
81,000+ cases of coronavirus are in China. That represents approximately 64% of cases worldwide. Take the total cases, subtract the deaths and recoveries and the remaining number is the ‘currently infected cases.’
On February 17th, the currently infected case number was 58,747. That number has come down since it peaked on the 17th of February. On March 4th, the currently infected case number was 38,505. It has started an upward slope since last week. Will we pass the old peak set in mid-February? I don’t know. Probably!
It takes time to develop effective drugs and vaccines. Over time, the currently infected cases will decrease. The flu season is annually over the winter months. Spring is nearly upon us.
As the weather warms up, it is expected that coronavirus-related cases will diminish as it does for the annual flu viruses. The coronavirus has yet to peak in the United States. I am certain it will continue to increase. People will get sick. People will recover – at least 99% of them.
It is a tragedy that so many will die because of this disease. Yes, but we have many more deaths from cancer, cardiovascular diseases, and more. It is part of our world. With our ability to travel nearly anywhere overnight, we must expect that diseases that are infectious with no symptoms will infect a lot of people. It is a fact.
Take precautions. Better yet, take precautions to prevent your exposure to those most sensitive to catching the coronavirus – the elderly and those with any type of upper respiratory issues. The coronavirus exacerbates the respiratory ailments and pneumonia develops. Death is not far away when pneumonia enters a challenged immune system.
Live Longer & Enjoy Life! – Red O’Laughlin