At the end of that post, I concluded the following things. First, COVID-19 has a much higher mortality rate than flu.
Second, without containment it would have increased the annual mortality rates of most countries by over 80%.
Third, containment has worked in driving down potential deaths from millions to hundreds of thousands (unfortunately over a million so far).
Fourth, because most governments were unprepared and lacked sufficient healthcare facilities, they were forced into varying degrees of lockdowns, bringing the world economy to a standstill.
Fifth, the more severe the lockdown and the more health facilities available means generally that there will be fewer deaths; and
sixth, the ‘lockdown lite’ approach risks more deaths without offering a stronger economy as a trade-off.
Last April, as the coronavirus pandemic took off, I ventured into an analysis of its health and economic impact. As I said at the time, “It is a risky thing to start analysing the COVID stats and coming up with some conclusions at this still early stage of the pandemic. It is even riskier for an economist to delve into areas beyond his or her supposed expertise. But after looking at myriads of articles, heaps of data and lots of presentations by people who ought to know what they are talking about, I cannot resist putting my dollar on the table.”
I think it is worth rereading that post, because, looking back, I think my analysis has held up pretty well six months later. At the end of that post, I concluded the following things. First, COVID-19 has a much higher mortality rate than flu. Second, without containment it…
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