If you wake up every morning hoping that tomorrow will end, you know – you are not alone. The whole world has held its breath and is waiting for good news. Today, in the midst of daily reports of the growing death toll from the new corona virus, any good news is worth its weight in gold. Perhaps that is why journalists have drawn their attention to Germany – at the time of this writing, more than 19,000 cases of new coronavirus infection have been confirmed in the country, and the death toll is 68 people. The mortality rate is 0.36%, which is much lower than in France (2%), Spain (4%) and Italy (8%). In addition, the mortality rate in Germany is lower than in South Korea (1%), which corresponds to all other countries. But what is the reason for this condition?
Coronavirus mortality rate:
South Korea: 1.1%.
1 corona virus in Germany
2 Hypothesis No. 1: Everything is just beginning
3 Hypothesis No. 2: Many young people were infected
4 Hypothesis No. 3: Little time has passed since the outbreak
5 Coronavirus in South Korea
Corona virus in Germany
Today, mass coronavirus testing is underway in South Korea with amazing results. Even in Italy – the epicenter of the SARS CoV-2 outbreak – there is a small town that has managed to curb the spread of the disease. This is the municipality of Vo Euganeo with 3,400 inhabitants near Venice. Immediately after the outbreak of CoVID-19 in Venice, the authorities of Vo Euganeo decided to subject all residents of the city to a mandatory check. According to test results, 90 people were infected with the corona virus, according to test results. The disease was controlled by quarantine the infected.
They also do a lot of tests in Germany, but is that really the point? According to Spaniard El Pais, the representative of the Spanish Ministry of Health, Fernando Simon, said the German government has no definitive explanation of what happened. However, there are at least three hypotheses.
Hypothesis # 1: Everything is just beginning
It is possible that the consequences of the coronavirus epidemic in Germany will occur later. The first outbreak in Europe occurred in Italy, where events developed very quickly, leading to high mortality rates – only a week passed from the moment of the first infection to the first victim. This means that the outbreak has been active for many weeks since the coronavirus takes two to three weeks to cause death. Fear in Italy has forced European countries to double their detection efforts.
However, Germany reacted very quickly to the appearance of the first infected. Germany is two to three weeks ahead of other countries according to the time. The authorities carried out extensive tests, but in the first phase they still missed the flash. Researchers believe that testing citizens can explain the reason for this low mortality rate.
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Hypothesis No. 2: Many young people have become infected
Many young people were among the first infections discovered in Germany. It's logical – they travel more and communicate with foreigners more often. In addition, the body of young people copes better with the virus, and the number of deaths increases with age. The average age of those infected in Germany is 47, while those over 60 make up 20%. These numbers are similar to those in South Korea, but are very different from those in Italy, where the average age of infected – confirmed cases – is 66 years. At the same time, 25% of German residents are over 65 years old.
It is also possible that the general development of the situation is influenced by cultural practices. The daily contact between young and old is different in all societies. According to Moritz Kun from the University of Bonn (Germany), 20% of young people between the ages of 30 and 49 still live with their parents in Italy, China or Japan, in Germany it is just over 10%.
Hypothesis No. 3: Little time has passed since the outbreak
According to the third hypothesis, the reason for the low mortality rates in Germany may be that too little time has passed since the epidemic began. This is because death does not happen suddenly – it takes time. In many countries, mortality increases over time. This happened in South Korea, where testing is in full swing but the mortality rate has doubled: from 0.5% to 1.1% between March 1st and 20th. If the outbreak in Germany started later than in Spain or Italy, the mortality rate may increase.
Coronavirus in South Korea
South Korea's experience shows that tests are behind everything. Obviously, the best detectability reduces the mortality rate and brings it closer to the actual picture: if you consider all cases of infection, including the lungs, the ratio of dead to infected is lower. Specialists in South Korea performed more than 5,000 tests per million people, and although the country's outbreak has been going on for many weeks, Korea is still the country with the lowest mortality rates.
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Researchers also believe that low mortality in Germany is likely due to a combination of several factors at the same time. Mortality in Germany is unlikely to approach that of Italy and Spain. But if the outbreak only gains momentum, the number of deaths will inevitably increase.