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There’s a More Accurate Way to Compare COVID-19 Deaths to the Flu

Politicians and pundits are making ham-handed comparisons

Months into the coronavirus pandemic, some politicians and pundits continue to promote ham-handed comparisons between COVID-19 and the seasonal flu to score political points.

Though there are many ways to debunk this fundamentally flawed comparison, one of the clearest was put forth this week by Jeremy Samuel Faust, an emergency room physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital at Harvard Medical School.

As Faust describes it, the issue boils down to this: The annual flu mortality figures published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are estimates produced by plugging laboratory-confirmed deaths into a mathematical model that attempts to correct for undercounting. COVID-19 death figures represent a literal count of people who have either tested positive for the virus or whose diagnosis was based on meeting certain clinical and epidemiological criteria.

Please select this link to read the complete article from The Washington Post.

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