by Ron Roizen
NOTE: This post, in Georgian, is available here, translated by Ana Mirilashvili.
As of today, some big numbers are being suggested for the novel coronavirus’s potential death toll in the United States – ranging from 100,000 to 240,000. These are merely projections. And yet they lack, when presented by themselves, appropriate historical or statistical context.
Every year roughly 2.8 million people pass away in the U.S. In a population of 325 million, 2.8M deaths represents a little less than 1 percent of the total population. In recent years the U.S. death rate has varied between 0.8 and 0.9 percent of total population per year.
If 240,000 “extra” deaths were in fact to result from this new virus, then total deaths would rise to a little over 3M, an increase of 8.6 percent over the “normal” U.S. mortality count. Continue reading