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LETTER: We must take the coronavirus seriously

Updated September 17, 2020 - 9:59 pm

A Sunday letter to the editor headlined “How about the coronavirus recovery rate?” implied that 97.1 percent of coronavirus patients would recover from the disease, and many would have mild to no symptoms. The writer needs to stop downplaying this disease and the deaths it causes

A 97.1 percent recovery rate equals a 2.9 percent death rate and would make COVID-19 just as deadly, if not more deadly, than the Spanish flu in 1918, which killed about 2 percent of those infected. That makes it 29 times more deadly than the normal annual flu, which kills about 0.1 percent every year.

In about seven months, the United States has, thanks to COVID-19, seen almost six times more deaths than it experienced during the 2018-19 flu season. One of the victims was my uncle, who died from COVID back in April. And for those who do survive it, thousands are seeing long-term lung damage, heart damage and other complications from the inflammation response caused by this disease.

Don’t downplay the deaths and long-term effects of this coronavirus. It’s killing about 1,000 people per day and likely will continue to do so for many more months in the future. Stay safe. Stay home if you can. Wear a mask. And look out for each other.

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