Did a WHO Official Admit that COVID-19 Has a Death Rate Similar to the Flu?

(AP Photo/Al-hadji Kudra Maliro)

On Friday, World Health Organization (WHO) official Dr. Mike Ryan said the group’s “best guess” estimate is that 10 percent of the world’s population, or 750 million people, have been infected by the COVID-19 virus.


Dr. Ryan sees this as a cause for alarm. “The problem is there is more than six billion left. Therein lies our problem.”

While we can all agree that the deaths caused by the Chinese virus are terrible, some simple math can put this number into perspective—something the media seems to be missing.

Worldwide, the WHO estimates 1,040,000 (rounded) have died from COVID.

So, let’s do the math:

1.04 million deaths / 750 million infections =  0.1386 percent infection fatality rate.

According to the CDC, in the 2017-2018 flu season, the seasonal flu had a mortality rate ranging from 0.129 percent to 0.1355 percent.

Back in March, the WHO estimated a 3.4 percent fatality rate for COVID-19. The health experts advising various governments worldwide used dire predictions of incredibly high death rates to justify unprecedented lockdowns. Even Dr. Anthony Fauci estimated that the fatality rate of the coronavirus was about 2 percent. “If you look at the cases that have come to the attention of the medical authorities in China, and you just do the math, the math is about 2%.”

Readers of PJ Media have known that COVID-19 likely had a mortality rate comparable to the seasonal flu since April, when an antibody test in Santa Clara County estimated a mortality rate between .09 percent and .14 percent. Basically in line with what the WHO is saying now.


By early May, there were at least five separate studies estimating a COVID-19 fatality rate of less than 1 percent, ranging from 0.06 percent to 0.72 percent.

So, while this isn’t exactly news we haven’t heard before, it’s a huge deal that the World Health Organization, by their own “best guess” scenario, has essentially admitted that COVID-19 has a comparable mortality rate to the seasonal flu.

And that’s before you even consider the possibility that COVID-19 deaths have been overcounted, or consider that the seasonal flu has a vaccine.


Matt Margolis is the author of the new book Airborne: How The Liberal Media Weaponized The Coronavirus Against Donald Trumpand the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis   


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