Dr. Anthony Fauci Estimates Coronavirus Mortality Rate at One Percent

This photo taken on January 24, 2020 and released by China's Xinhua News Agency shows chief nurse Ma Jing (R) holding a patient's hand to comfort her in the ICU (intensive care unit) of Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University in Wuhan
© XINHUA/AFP/File XIONG Qi

Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Dr. Anthony Fauci testified Wednesday in Congress that the mortality rate for coronavirus was about one percent.

“I think if you count all the cases of minimally symptomatic or asymptomatic, that probably brings the mortality down to around one percent,” Fauci testified during a House of Representatives hearing on Capitol Hill.

Fauci said that the mortality rate for the common flu was 0.1 percent, which meant that the coronavirus was about ten times as lethal.

“This is ten times more lethal than the seasonal flu,” he said. “I think that’s something that people can get their arms around and understand.”

Fauci also said that the stated mortality data including that from China showed that the virus had a three percent fatality rate so far, but said the number was only based on patients demonstrating serious symptoms.

Fauci also said that coronavirus was not as lethal as SARS, which infected 8,000 people in America and killed 775, putting the mortality rate at between 9-10 percent.

“It clearly is not as lethal, but it certainly spreads better,” he said about coronavirus.

He said that the outbreak would continue to grow in the United States and proposed that Americans take steps to contain and mitigate the disease, especially in communities experiencing more cases as well as blocking infected individuals from coming into the country.

“I can say we will see more cases and things will get worse than they are right now,” he said, adding, “bottom line, it’s going to get worse.”

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