80% of US coronavirus deaths have been among people 65 and older, a new CDC report says - here's what it reveals about the US cases
- 80% of coronavirus deaths in the US so far have been among people 65 and older, according to a new report from the CDC.
- The CDC looked at 4,226 confirmed coronavirus cases as of March 16, and found that deaths, ICU admissions, and hospitalization rates were all higher among older Americans.
- "The risk for serious disease and death from COVID-19 is higher in older age groups," the report said - that's similar to trends in China and South Korea.
- However, the CDC cautioned that the findings are still preliminary, that it's still missing some data, and that testing has still been "limited."
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Americans ages 65 and older are suffering the highest rates of death and serious illness from the coronavirus, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
"Overall, 31% of cases, 45% of hospitalizations, 53% of ICU admissions, and 80% of deaths associated with COVID-19 were among adults aged ≥65 years with the highest percentage of severe outcomes among persons aged ≥85 years," the report said.
The CDC said it had confirmed 4,226 COVID-19 cases and 44 deaths in the US as of March 16. As of Wednesday, a combination of CDC and state-level data suggests the US had more than 8,000 cases and 129 deaths. The numbers are likely to rise as testing efforts - which have been woefully slow in the US - continue to ramp up. Experts have estimated that 40%-70% of the US population could become infected and 1 million could die.
The CDC found that hospitalization and intensive-care admission rates have been higher among older Americans. More than 500 people - roughly one in eight of those with confirmed cases - have been hospitalized so far, and 45% of them were 65 or older.
The findings are "similar to reports from other countries," the report said, which have found that older people with preexisting conditions are disproportionately at risk. However, the CDC cautioned that its own results are preliminary, since it's still missing data on some of the patients' ages and other health issues and has only been able to conduct "limited testing."
A study from the Chinese CDC found that coronavirus patients over 80 there had a death rate of 15% compared to 0.2% for those under 50. In South Korea, which has seen some of the lowest death rates, 7.2% of people over 80 have died, while only 0.1% of those under 50 - and no people under 30 at all - have been killed by the disease.
Here's a breakdown of how the coronavirus is affecting people of different ages within the US and across the world.
The CDC's numbers suggest that nearly 1,200 cases have been reported among people older than 65, while nearly 1,700 patients are younger than that.
Americans above 85 make up the largest portion of coronavirus cases when the data is adjusted for population size.
The highest number of coronavirus deaths in the US is also among older Americans.
The COVID-19 death rate in the US is above 10% for those over 85.
China has also seen the highest portion of coronavirus deaths among older patients.
South Korea has also seen higher deaths among older age groups, though it has reported lower death rates overall than most countries.
Italy has been one of the countries most impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. Its population is the world's second-oldest, on average, after Japan's.
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