Horowitz: New study: Millennials think their risk from COVID-19 is exponentially more than the true threat – Conservative Review

When asked by the four researchers, who hail from Harvard, Oxford, and Università Bocconi, out of “1,000 people very similar to you” how many would die from COVID-19 over the next nine weeks, the median estimated guess by respondents aged 18-34 was 20, or 2%.  In other words, the average Millennial thought that 2% of everyone like them would die within nine weeks from the virus. In contrast, in contrast, the respondents aged 70 years or older, which is exponentially more at risk, asses their risk of dying at about 1%.

What is the infection fatality rate (IFR) for younger people? The CDC estimates a 0.05% IFR for everyone in the age cohort of 0-49. Other estimates based on Spain serology tests broken down by age suggest an even lower IFR for those 18-49.

But that is only the risk once someone contracts the virus. When you couple the chance of not getting the virus together with the chance of not dying from it once infected, the rate is even lower. Four infectious disease doctors in Canada estimate that the individual rate of death from COVID-19 for people under 65 years of age in Canada is six per million people, or 0.0006% – 1 in 166,666, which is “roughly equivalent to the risk of dying from a motor vehicle accident during the same time period.” Those numbers are even lower for people under 35. In other words, the respondents in this study overestimated their risk of dying by at least a factor of 3,000.

According to the CDC, the IFR for those over 65 is 1.3%, although it is heavily skewed by nursing home deaths in the numerator. For seniors in better health, the numbers are much lower. Thus, the senior respondents in the survey are much closer to reality in their thinking.

Horowitz: New study: Millennials think their risk from COVID-19 is exponentially more than the true threat – Conservative Review