The coronavirus doesn’t look like the flu and the ongoing confrontations are misleading, a senior American Heart Association official said Friday.
Covid-19 is new, people have no immunity, there is no vaccine to prevent it, and there is no good treatment for the infection, said Dr. Eduardo Sanchez in a comment on the American Heart Association website.
Furthermore, the new coronavirus is more dangerous in several ways, Sanchez said.
“Covid-19 appears to be more contagious,” he wrote.
“Both diseases spread from person to person through the respiratory droplets produced when a sick person coughs or sneezes,” he added. “Available information suggests that SARS-CoV-2 is spreading more efficiently than influenza. It spreads easily and sustainably, in the sense that it passes from person to person without stopping. “
And despite continuing references to how many people are killed by seasonal flu each year, Covid-19 killed more people faster, said Sanchez, who is head of the American Heart Association’s Center for Health Metrics and Assessment.
“(Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) estimates that between 24,000 and 62,000 flu deaths occurred between the 2019-2020 flu season (October 1, 2019 to April 4, 2020). This is a wide range because influenza is not a disease reported in most areas of the country and the estimate comes from a mathematical model based on hospitalizations associated with the flu, “he wrote.
Covid-19 deaths are counted one by one, Sanchez noted. More than 86,000 people died of Covid-19 in the United States, according to Johns Hopkins University, and died within just three months.
“Our understanding of the virus is changing rapidly, but so far COVID-19 appears to pose a greater risk to public health than the flu,” said Sanchez.