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Liz Wheeler on Why Covid-19 in the U.S. Is Not the Same as in Italy

‘Italy has the oldest per capita population in Europe’


WHEELER: “I’m not a prognosticator. I cannot predict what will happen with the Chinese coronavirus here in the United States. What I can tell you is the one-to-one comparisons between Italy in the United States during this coronavirus outbreak are simply not accurate. I’m sure you've all heard the narrative the U.S. is ten days behind Italy, in ten days we’re going to suffer mass death and or emergency rooms are going to be overwhelmed and break down, more people will die and the death rate is 4 percent, etc., etc. Tonight I want to give you five reasons why the United States is not Italy. Reason number one, Italy has the oldest per capita population in Europe. Older than United States, the second oldest in the world except Japan. The average age of people dying from coronavirus in Italy is 81 years old. Reason number two, Italy's population has a high percentage of smokers, which means people with underlying health conditions. The World Health Organization and other experts have told us the at-risk populations for COVID-19 are elderly people, people with compromised immune systems and people with underlying health conditions. Italy has a high, high number of people who combine old age with underlying lung conditions and higher percentage than the United States.”

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