COVID-19 deaths can't be compared to flu deaths, doctors warn

The mortality rate for flu is estimated, whereas the stats for coronavirus are exact, they argue

There's no good way to compare estimates of yearly flu mortality to the actual numbers of COVID-19 deaths currently being recorded, doctors argue in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Person with flu

Attempts to compare these disparate kinds of numbers obscures the "true threat to public health from COVID-19," they write.

Co-author Dr Jeremy Faust, an emergency doctor at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, US, says most people don't realise that the numbers being referred to for influenza deaths are just estimates, which are being

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