This is based on recent observations, mostly from China, and medical journals, and is ongoing, but these appear to be trends:
- Coronavirus spreads slower than the flu. Flu has a shorter incubation period and a shorter serial interval. Incubation period is the time it takes an infected person to show symptoms. Serial interval is the time between successive cases; for SARS-CoV-2 it is five to six days while for the flu it averages three days. That is why the flu spreads faster,
- For some reason we don’t know yet, children who are well known for spreading the flu (every time I visit the grandkids I pick up some crud, usually via their daycare) are less likely to spread SARS-CoV-2 than adults, It might be because their immune system is already heavily immunized against the common cold (which is a Cornovirus form but not a SARS). Or they might simply have better immune systems that react faster.
- SARS-CoV-2 is has a much higher mortality rate than the flu. People who keep posting about how many more dead from the flu than coronavirus are spreading a form of misinformation as we are in the early stage of what is very likely going to be a pandemic. Flu mortality is .1%. Right now, SARS-CoV-2 is roughly 3 to 4%.
- Secondary infections. The flu occasionally leads to secondary infections. But SARS-CoV-2 infected average 2 secondary infection, which is mainly why it is so deadly. The primary one is pneunomia.
- There is no cure or vaccine for SARS-CoV-2. There is a flu vaccine.
More to come as we learn more. But being educated is the best defense. Wash your hands. Don’t touch your face. Use Live Long and Prosper rather than hugs or handshakes.