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What do we know about the risk of dying from COVID-19?

What do we know about the risk of dying from COVID-19? by Hannah Ritchie and Max Roser – March 25, 2020 – “Our World in Data presents the data and research to make progress against the world’s largest problems. This blog post draws on data and research discussed in our entry on Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19). There is a straightforward question that most people would like answered. If someone is infected with COVID-19, how likely is that person to die?  This question is simple, but surprisingly hard to answer. Here we explain why that is. We’ll discuss the “case fatality rate”, the “crude mortality rate”, and the “infection fatality rate”, and why they’re all different. The key point is that the “case fatality rate”, the most commonly discussed measure of the risk of dying, is not the answer to the question, for two reasons. One, it relies on the number of confirmed cases, and many cases are not confirmed; and two, it relies on the total number of deaths, and with COVID-19, some people who are sick and will die soon have not yet died. These two facts mean that it is extremely difficult to make accurate estimates of the true risk of death…”

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