Seasonal flu deaths vs covid-19 deaths in the US

Seasonal flu deaths for the season: 8,200

COVID-19 deaths to date: 139

Denial is a sweet thing… I guess?


@Dave44 its not clear what point you making here.

COVID-19 has been in the US for 6-8 weeks but as far as we know not many people have it yet. It seems experts expect a lot of growth in cases over the next few weeks.

Flu season I assume started several months ago in 2019. Are the numbers you posted only showing deaths that overlap the last 2 months COVID-19 has been an issue?


Interesting video that that was recorded 5 years ago.


What’s your point?

Heart disease is the leading health-related cause of death in the US. These two are both far, far down the list. What difference does it make?

While all health-related deaths are tragic, I’m personally more concerned about MY chances of serious illness or death than I am about absolute number of deaths. If I’m unfortunate enough to contract COVID-19, given my age and diabetes, the death risk is much higher than with seasonal flu.


Haven’t we gone over this too many times?

  • This is not the flu.
  • There is no vaccine.
  • People have no immunity to it.
  • It is highly contagious.
  • It spreads exponentially, without prevention measures.

For now, it is only stopped by social distancing and testing, as well as good hygiene. Otherwise, the infection rate and the death toll would much be higher.

Do you not read of stories where it rips through entire families, entire communities?

We live in Manhattan, and without social distancing, it would run rampant through our population and would kill many, many people, particularly our elderly, but also sicken our young.


As you said, flu season has mostly passed, coronavirus infections have barely started…

The hospital ship, the Comfort, is part of an effort to expand hospital capacity, [they] said would reach its peak demand in about 45 days, well before new permanent facilities can be built.

Removed link to avoid mentioning politics, but it is the March 19th article here:

Considering the similarities, We do self-quarantine when we have the flu - my mother-in-law won’t go near us when one of us is sick - stay home from work, wash my hands, avoid some forms of contact with my spouse, avoid sharing food-related items.

Where it is different, its effects are unknown for most of us, and for anyone in our social sphere. I know when I have the flu, and I know it is not fatal, at least for me, but I do not know the effects of the new virus, nor its effects, on those around me. I was vaccinated against the flu, obviously not again coronavirus. The new virus rises exponentially if not contained, and considering its unknowns, not a risk I’d take, for myself or for others.

“Despite the morbidity and mortality with influenza, there’s a certainty … of seasonal flu,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in a White House press conference on Jan. 31. “I can tell you all, guaranteed, that as we get into March and April, the flu cases are going to go down. You could predict pretty accurately what the range of the mortality is and the hospitalizations [will be],” Fauci said. “The issue now with [COVID-19] is that there’s a lot of unknowns.”

Everyone has read these, but this had a few new elements for me, notably percentages displaying symptoms.

Long ago someone commented on nature programs asking how many times can you watch a Lion take a kill up a tree.

Get it?


Thought this was a good link for data. Not sure if it has already been posted.


That site is easier on the eyes than the Johns Hopkins black and red one. The numbers are frightening. It’s interesting that the site was published by a high school student from Washington State.

People from all walks of life and backgrounds, prompted by a crisis, are stepping up to help fellow humans. This spirit is what will sustain our hopes to get us through these dark times. Thanks for the link @Jim26!


I think denial at this point may be an unconscious protective mechanism against fear.

My only hope is that enough people understand and are self-isolating that in one or two weeks we’ll see the curve flatten a bit.

Because right now, the curve is looking scary with no end in sight.


Agreed. It is difficult to envision what my area will be like in a few weeks from now.

I’m worried about many different things. I won’t add to everyone else’s worries by stating them.


Denial is indeed a useful coping mechanism, but only in the short-run. If you hang onto it for too long it can harm you.

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Do you keep a journal? I’ve kept one on and off for 25 years. Lately I’ve been writing in it more. That, plus lots of virtual communication with family and friends I love, is really helping.

And unfortunately in this case, it can harm others. Many others, since this virus spreads exponentially.


I was thinking about risk responses, not that it is denial per se, and we all have factual differences in our circumstances, as well as personality ones, that will temper our response to threats. Although we all need to be concerned, some of us have less immediate risks, and some of us have more.

This will flip flop back and forth, but…

Not to minimize anyone’s concerns or risks, but someone living in an affected urban environment has a heightened risk, and then there is the loss to businesses that directly affect many service workers. The affluent can work from home and have things delivered, but someone still has to prepare and deliver it. The latter are more at risk, and typically have fewer resources in case something happens. Suburban and rural people might seem at less risk, but they might also have fewer medical resources should their community get affected, etc.

Someone in a different environment will asses their risks differently, but personally…

Increases my risk:

  • Type 1 Diabetes, although well-controlled
  • Occasional upper respiratory infections (?)
  • Dense, urban environment
  • Older, but not a senior

Decreases my risk:

  • Can work from home
  • Conscientious, taking precautions
  • Super-concerned spouse

Neither, but affect reasoning

  • Great local medical systems / best doctors
  • Local government response
  • Additional resources coming to the city, e.g., floating hospital
  • Clear messaging from government

You all should be watching Cuomo on live TV right now. He’s making a lot of sense about perspective regarding the positive test results. I hope many people see the entirety of his news conference.

My concerns are not just about my personal risk or safety. My concerns are about myself, but also my loved ones, my city, my country, and the world.


Absolutely right. I am socially concerned, but still, people perceive risk differently at a group level, and are not necessarily in denial.

In many ways, my risk becomes others risk. My heightened risk increases the risk for others, and my decreased risk, while in some ways decrease others’ risk, increases it for others. The last section, “Neither”, is a positive for risk reduction, for everyone.

Although you disliked that aspect of my message, what did you think of the other elements, the real ‘meat’ of the post?

Do you guys want the link to the speakers from the Mayo? They were on yesterday. I think they will be on again at 1pm today

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