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Stanford Medical Professors: Chinese Coronavirus Death Predictions Are Greatly Exaggerated

Jeff Katz
March 27, 2020 - 2:27 pm

Drs. Eran Bendavid and Jay Bhattacharya, medical experts from Stanford University, are concerned that death toll estimates from the coronavirus are far too high.

In an editorial in the Wall Street Journal, the doctors write that while they do encourage social distancing and other procedures to help slow the spread, the extreme measures taken to shut down the economy and close businesses may be based on flawed research.

They write, "If it's true that the novel coronavirus would kill millions without shelter-in-place orders and quarantines, then the extraordinary measures being carried out in cities and states around the country are surely justified. But, there's little evidence to confirm that premise - and projections of the death toll could plausibly be orders of magnitude too high."

They added, "Fear of Covid-19 is based on its high estimated case fatality rate — 2% to 4% of people with confirmed Covid-19 have died, according to the World Health Organization and others. So if 100 million Americans ultimately get the disease, 2 million to 4 million could die. We believe that estimate is deeply flawed. The true fatality rate is the portion of those infected who die, not the deaths from identified positive cases."