Friday, November 12, 2004

H5N1 Mortality: A Minor Discrepancy

What's the human mortality rate of the H5N1 influenza virus? Here's one guess:

The WHO estimated that it would take three to six months for a mutated virus to travel around the world, with 25 to 30 percent of the world's population likely to be infected. About one percent of those who fell ill were likely to die, Stoehr said.
Here's another:
Allison McGeer, an infectious-diseases expert at Toronto's Mount Sinai Hospital...noted that the Asian bird flu has triggered so much concern because it...has an apparent mortality rate of 70 per cent....

For what it's worth (a lot), observed H5N1 mortality to date is indeed at about 70 percent, as The Globe and Mail reports. Where the one-percent figure in the AFP story comes from is anybody's guess.

Sorry to be a bore...I just like to keep track of these things.

No comments: