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September 26, 2022
Why COVID is still more dangerous than seasonal flu?
Since the time when COVID first hit us in 2020, the virus has evolved significantly. During the second coronavirus wave, the delta variant claimed several lives and left a large population in distress. But following vaccination new emerging variants like the Omicron are causing less severe infections and more manageable symptoms. And many are of the view that now, COVID has become more like the seasonal flu. But the question is whether this assumption is actually true.
COVID and Flu - how similar and how different are they?
Both COVID-19 and the flu are contagious respiratory illnesses. While the first is caused by coronavirus, the latter is caused due to influenza viruses. Currently, it is not possible to distinguish the infections just by looking at the infections.
As of now, it is evident that symptoms alone cannot help differentiate between COVID and the flu. Like flu, new variants like the Omicron are said to cause mild symptoms like a sore throat, runny nose and fatigue. The only way to know whether you have COVID or flu is by getting yourself tested.
Moreover, due to vaccinations, some experts do believe that the worst is over and are comparing the deadly virus to the flu.
Which is more dangerous?
Though COVID is currently causing lesser dangerous symptoms, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the White House's medical adviser disagrees with that COVID a less risky or less dangerous than the flu.
"I'm sorry — I just disagree," he says.
"The severity of one compared to the other is really quite stark. And the potential to kill of one versus the other is really quite stark."
Many like Fauci say that COVID-19 is still killing hundreds of people daily. Over 125,000 additional COVID deaths could occur over the next 12 months if deaths continue at that pace, Fauci highlights.
As compared to flu, which kills about 50,000 people during a bad season, COVID-19 is said to have already killed more than 1 million Americans and was the third leading cause of death in 2021.