New Data Suggest the Coronavirus Isn’t as Deadly as We Thought: A study finds 50 to 85 times as many infections as known cases—meaning a far lower fatality rate
From The Wall Street Journal:
The Covid-19 shutdowns have been based on the premise that the disease would kill more than two million Americans absent drastic actions to slow its spread. That model assumed case fatality rates—the share of infected people who die from the disease—of 1% to 3%. The World Health Organization’s estimated case-fatality rate was 3.4%.
Some experts—including in these pages—have questioned this assumption. They argue that known cases are likely only a small portion of the true number of infections, and thus high case-fatality rates could be off by orders of magnitude. We don’t know what portion of infections have gone undetected for a lack of tests, restrictive qualifications to get tested, and a potentially large incidence of mild illness or asymptomatic infection.