Regional comparison of COVID-19 fatality rate in China 2020

As of February 11, 2020, the fatality rate of novel coronavirus COVID-19 (formally known as 2019-nCoV) ranged around 2.3 percent in China. The figure was higher in Hubei province, which where Wuhan city located in, reaching approximately 2.9 percent. In April, the case fatality rate of COVID-19 increased to above four percent in the country.

What is COVID-19?

Coronaviruses (CoV) are a family of a hundred viruses which can lead to potentially deadly diseases in mammals and birds. Some of them can mutate and spread from animals to humans. Common transmission routes are airborne droplets and direct contact in humans, causing fever, respiratory infections and sometimes gastrointestinal problems. The new strain of coronavirus disease in 2019 (COVID-19) is one of the seven known coronaviruses, which can infect humans with an estimated incubation period between two and 14 days. Most of the early COVID-19 cases occurred among people with a median age of 55 years old, who had been to the Huanan seafood market in Wuhan.

Comparison with SARS and MERS

COVID-19 has become one of the largest epidemics in the world. SARS and MERS are other deadly coronaviruses. In 2002 and 2003, the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) killed almost 800 people after its emergence in southern China. This was mostly in mainland China and Hong Kong. Another major virus crisis was the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), which was first identified in Saudi Arabia in 2012. The virus spread to 27 countries, resulting in nearly 860 deaths. In terms of mortality rates, MERS was much higher than SARS.

Fatality rate of novel coronavirus COVID-19 in China as of February 11, 2020, by region*

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Release date

February 2020



Survey time period

as of February 11, 2020

Number of respondents

44,672 respondents

Supplementary notes

*Fatality rate refers to the number of deaths divided by the number of confirmed cases in the corresponding regions.

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