Coronavirus vs. Influenza – Know the Risks

Coronavirus vs. Influenza – Know the Risks

Coronavirus vs. Influenza – Know the Risks 2121 1414 AEPC Health

The number of confirmed cases and deaths from the coronavirus continue to grow as it spreads across the globe. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared a global health emergency over the coronavirus with cases confirmed in the Asia-Pacific region, Europe, North America and the Middle East. Latest reporting highlights the following:

  • Global death toll rises to at least 638, with more than 31,000 confirmed cases, the vast majority of them in China
  • 12th coronavirus case confirmed in U.S.
  • 8 Americans diagnosed with virus on cruise ship quarantined in Japan

Check out the interactive, global map for the latest numbers of confirmed cases, deaths, and recoveries  – all in real time!  The map was produced by researchers at Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering, and uses data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC), the WHO, China’s CDC, and other sources. Use this link for mobile devices.

The current coronavirus statistics are dwarfed by far more common, and sometimes deadly virus – seasonal flu.  The CDC’s  February 1, 2020 weekly report provided the following estimates of the flu’s impact to date:

  • At least 22 million people in the U.S. have experienced flu illnesses this season
  • 12,000 deaths from flu, including 68 children
  • About 210,000 people have been hospitalized so far
While this season’s influenza may be one of the worst in a decade, it will not rise to the level of an epidemic.  However, expert  health and science groups, such as the WHO, the National Academy of Sciences and the CDC, predict influenza pandemics are nearly certainty. According to the CDC, a pandemic could arise if a strain mutated or developed directly from animal flu viruses.

The 1918 influenza pandemic was the most severe pandemic in recent history, killing an estimated 30-50 million people.  Check out this 90 second CDC video on the 1918 pandemic.
For the weekend, read more about the coronavirus and the flu:
  1. Wall Street Journal:  What We Know About the Coronavirus, From Symptoms to Treatment
  2. Bridge Magazine:  Coronavirus Tracker: What Michigan needs to know now
  3. New York Times: China Begins Testing an Antiviral Drug in Coronavirus Patients
  4. Medscape:  Coronavirus Is Bad but US Flu’s New Numbers Still Far Worse
  5. Wall Street Journal: The Flu Is Hitting Children Especially Hard This Season
  6. REUTERS: World must prepare for inevitable next flu pandemic, WHO says
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