Here’s Why COVID-19 Is Worse Than SARS

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Dr. Fauci, demonstrating his superhuman patience, appeared on Laura Ingraham’s show yesterday:


But wait. This isn’t a dumb question. Why did SARS “go away”? And if SARS went away, why can’t COVID-19 go away too? Is COVID-19 just easier to transmit? Yes indeed:

SARS and MERS have significantly higher case fatality rates than COVID-19. Yet COVID-19 is more infectious — the underlying SARS-CoV-2 virus spreads more easily among people, leading to greater case numbers.

COVID-19 is more infectious because the mechanism of transmission is different:

Once SARS jumped to humans, it was transmitted from person to person. It is most virulent during the second week of infection when virus excretions through the mucus and stool peak. With SARS, most human-to-human infections occurred in health care settings that lacked robust infection control procedures. When infection control practices were implemented, the outbreak ended. Since then, the only occurrences have occurred through laboratory accidents. They have not spread throughout the community.

COVID-19 appears to spread person-to-person, through droplets that are expelled when a person coughs or sneezes and then are inhaled by a nearby person. Less often, it may be spread by touching an infected surface and then touching one’s mouth, nose, or eyes. Transmission may also occur before a person becomes symptomatic. As the CDC cautions, “COVID-19 is a new disease and we are still learning how it spreads.”

So the big difference is that COVID-19 spreads via coughs and sneezes in the general population, and that’s inherently much harder to control than mucus and stool transmission. If anybody has more to add to this, let us know in comments.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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