Something fundamentally new has come out just in the last 24 hours, which is the best data we’ve had by miles so far.
What we’ve been waiting for is what we call serological surveys, which is taking blood samples and looking at antibody responses, in order to determine if you’ve got Covid-19, or if you’ve had it. And so they studied a German village of 12,000 people, that was reasonably hard hit by the virus. They determined that 15% of the population had had Covid-19. And when you know that, you can work out this all-important case fatality rate, which is, of the people that got it, how many people actually ended up dying? That number is a really big deal, because we need to know whether we’re dealing with the seasonal flu or the Spanish Flu.
The Spanish Flu had a case fatality rate of 2.6%. So it’s quite a lot. The seasonal flu has a case fatality rate of 0.1%. So it turns out that the case fatality rate for this German population, using serology, which is the best available stuff that we’ve had, is 0.37%. So it is appearing to be quite a lot more deadly than the seasonal flu – almost four times more.
What does that mean? Four times more deadly than the flu, at least from that initial survey, however, that might not represent everywhere else.
We’re going to exit this isolation at some stage, and some people are still going to get it. If we’re going to exit, what should our plan be? And what’s the best possible thing we can do to assure people are healthy?
We’re talking about age as being the risk. But I don’t think it’s age. It’s chronic conditions.
It’s diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke, neurological disorders, cancers, high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, poor blood glucose control and insulin resistance.
We’re not talking about what our exit strategy is to improve the health of our population, are we? If we can do that, then we’re going to be able to, first of all, make people much more resistant to dying from Covid-19. Early deaths and morbidity – lower quality of life – are due to those exact things as well. So our exit strategy should be investing quite a lot of money into getting people to exercise more, eat better and sleep better.