The “common cold” is usually either a coronavirus or a rhinovirus (usually the latter). Yet at the beginning of the pandemic and to a lesser extent now, people have referred to this virus as THE coronavirus. This is extremely deceptive and makes Covid-19 seem more unique and deadly than it is, which causes panic.
Not only is it not very unique but it’s not even the most deadly coronavirus. SARS and MERS, both of which are coronaviruses that have been dealt with in the last 20 years are far more deadly than Covid-19. Why would it be referred to as THE coronavirus if it’s not the most deadly? Of course deaths aren’t the only measure of lethality, there’s been tons of stories of people getting sick for longer periods of time with covid, but this can happen with different kinds of influenza as well, it’s called post viral syndrome. There are also things like myocarditis, and the even more rare instance where something crazy can happen like becoming paralyzed. These headlines about covid causing these things in rare instances frighten people but once again, influenza can do these things too. Since they’re rare, people don’t fear monger about them.
As far as the full hospitals, since covid is more of a nursing home problem than most influenza strains and hits kids a lot less hard, it actually has caused less hospitalizations than a normal bad winter season in several places. According to CDC numbers more people were hospitalized during the 2017 /2018 flu season in the United States than during the worst stretch of covid (an estimated 800k hospitalizations in 6 months that season), there were less hospitalizations the first 6 months of covid (hospitalization rate doesn’t equal 800k here).The Virus of Mass Destruction – Centre for Research on Globalization