SARS-CoV-2 new case numbers are surging again in many countries (“2nd waves”), but with a notably lower death rate compared to the first wave. So is this the new norm? Well, as we have come to expect from COVID-19, the situation is complex and a lot of unknowns are at play. Achim Regenauer shares his insights.
The explanation for the lower death rate is still unclear and requires more analyses and monitoring. In the meantime, unsubstantiated explanations have arisen, including that what we now face is a milder variant of SARS-CoV-2 (as yet there is no evidence for this; a lengthy, severity-based comparative analysis between the new mutant and parent virus would be required).
In fact, there are many plausible explanations, and it’s highly probable that several are responsible1:
In my opinion it’s likely, for the reasons given above, that excess mortality will fundamentally remain lower than in early 2020, but that it will rise again, depending on the nature and timing of the following factors1:
1 Sources provided on request to the author.
2 E.g. https://partnerre.com/opinions_research/the-wider-mortality-morbidity-impact-of-covid-19-a-discussion/
Opinions expressed are those of the author. This article is for general information, education and discussion purposes only. It does not constitute legal or professional advice of PartnerRe or its affiliates.