A third of coronavirus patients admitted to NHS hospitals die from the disease and more than half of those on respirators do not survive, according to a large study.
Researchers who have analyzed almost 17,000 COVID-19 hospitalizations in the UK have found that 33% of them have died, 49% have been discharged and 17% are still receiving care.
The study, the largest of its kind in Europe, found that only one-fifth of British intubated patients had returned home alive.
Fifty-three percent died while on a ventilator and 27 percent are still connected to machines at the time of writing.
Among those in intensive care, 45% have died from the virus, 31% have returned home after conquering the disease, and just under a quarter are still being treated.
Experts said the results suggest that the coronavirus could be as dangerous as Ebola – which kills around four in 10 people it infects.
Calum Semple, a professor of epidemic medicine at the University of Liverpool, said “people need to brainstorm” how deadly the virus is.
He said that although the coronavirus infects many more people than Ebola, their mortality rate is similar when the diseases result in hospitalization.
The dark realities of the crisis were exposed in a report by the International Severe Acute Respiratory and Emerging Infections (ISARIC).
A third of coronavirus patients admitted to NHS hospitals die from the disease, shows the largest COVID-19 study in Europe
Researchers who analyzed nearly 17,000 COVID-19 hospitalizations in the UK found that 49% of them had been discharged
The International Severe Acute Respiratory and Emerging Infections (ISARIC) report also found that 17% of patients admitted to hospital are still receiving care.
It was produced by a team of leading British infectious disease scientists who are part of the world’s pandemic planning agency.
The research looked at 16,749 hospital admissions between February 6 and April 18 in hospitals in England, Scotland and Wales.
Commenting on the results, Professor Semple said, “It is a common misconception, even today, that Covid is just the wrong dose of the flu.
“The coronavirus is a very serious disease, the crude rate of hospital mortality is the same magnitude as the Ebola virus.
“If you come to the hospital with Covid disease and you are sick enough to be admitted – and you have to be sick enough these days to be admitted – the crude death rate is between 35 and 40%.
“This is the same crude death rate for a person admitted to the hospital with Ebola. People need to hear this and have a headache.
The study, carried out by the best British infectious disease experts, found that 53% of intubated patients had not survived
Only one-fifth went home alive, says pandemic planning group newspaper
Their research has shown that more than a quarter of people on mechanical ventilation are still receiving treatment.
Coronavirus eight times more deadly than flu
At least 4.2 million people in the UK have been infected with the killer coronavirus, one of the best estimates of the death rate from the disease.
And London, which has been at the heart of the UK epidemic, is home to at least 935,000 people who have already had the disease.
The estimate is based on figures from a public health surveillance program in New York, which found that a quarter of the city’s population of 8 million people had been exposed to the virus – which means that the approximately 16,000 deaths recorded there represent a death rate of 0.79 per cent.
Other estimates from European cities and a study by the University of California at Berkeley indicate that the death rate from the virus is between 0.19 and 0.5%. In comparison, the death rate from influenza is around 0.1%.
Extrapolating these figures suggests that between 4.2 and 33.5 million Britons were infected with COVID-19, the vast majority of which have not been tested, and that between 935,000 and 3 , 8 million people in London could already be sick.
Officials have no idea the real extent of the epidemic due to a lack of widespread testing for people outside of NHS hospitals.
161,145 people were officially tested positive in the UK yesterday, but the vast majority were patients or NHS hospital staff. Countless members of the public have reportedly been infected and recovered without medical help.
Early surveys in major western cities now provide insight into the true death rate from infection – that is, the proportion of people who die among all those who catch it, not just those who end up at the hospital.
Applying these figures to the number of people who died in London and the UK as a whole can give a rough picture of the number of people in the country who could have been infected.
Data from the National Statistics Office today suggests that the true death rate from the UK coronavirus epidemic will ultimately be 55% higher than the daily updates from the Department of Health, which means that 33 596 people may have already died across the country as well as 7,391 people in the capital. city.
Professor Chris Whitty, the country’s chief medical officer, said last week that he thought more than 10% of Londoners had already caught the virus – some 900,000 people – but that exposure was probably lower in other regions.
“The reason the government wants people to stay at home until the epidemic subsides is that it is an extremely dangerous disease. It doesn’t surprise me at all, it’s a really unpleasant disease. “
The ISARIC study also found that most of the patients who fell ill enough to need treatment were between 57 and 82 years of age. The median age of those who are victims of the disease is 80 years.
But one in 100 coronaviruses needing hospital care is less than five years old and one in 50 is 18 years of age or younger.
The most severe symptoms of the disease appear to strike men more than women, with 60% of admissions being men.
Pregnancy was not associated with an increased risk, the researchers note, unlike the flu which makes future mothers more vulnerable.
Since the start of the epidemic, doctors have warned that people with underlying health conditions are most likely to become seriously ill from the virus.
But the study found that almost half (47%) of the patients had no reported comorbidities.
For those with health conditions, the most common were heart disease (29%), diabetes (19%), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (19%) and asthma (14%).
The most common symptoms were cough (70%), fever (69%) and shortness of breath (65%).
But the researchers noted that there were also three distinct groups of symptoms in certain areas of the body – the most common being in the respiratory system.
These symptoms included sore throat, runny nose, ear pain, wheezing, and chest pain.
Another group was in the stomach and intestines, patients with vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal cramps.
The third included musculoskeletal symptoms – including muscle and joint pain and fatigue.
In the document, which was published on the preprinted website MedRxiv and has not been peer reviewed, the researchers said, “Although most patients with COVID-19 suffer from ” a mild illness, among those who were hospitalized 14 days before data extraction, half were released alive and a third died.
“Seventeen percent of those hospitalized required intensive care. Those with poor results are more often the elderly, men and the obese.
“The near-real-time analysis of the data presented by this urgent public health study enables health decision-makers to react dynamically to the best evidence as it stands, such as increased capacity for intensive care.
“Our study is the first report in Europe of a very large and rapid study on COVID19, demonstrating the vital importance of putting in place plans for the study of threats from epidemics and pandemics and the need to address them. maintain.
“It provides evidence of the course of the disease in the UK population, identifies the most exposed sectors of the population and uses health resources. “