BBC Buries the Lead in 8th Paragraph: Coronavirus Death Rate Only 0.7% in S. Korea Due to Thorough Testing

Craig Bannister | March 12, 2020 | 11:58am EDT
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(Getty Images/Andrea Verdelli)

A BBC article devotes seven paragraphs warning about the coronavirus threat in South Korea before mentioning that the country’s “trace, test and treat” policies may be proof that the fatality rate reported worldwide is greatly inflated because so many asymptomatic cases are going unidentified.

The story, “Coronavirus in South Korea: How 'trace, test and treat' may be saving lives,” provides personal accounts of South Koreans who have either been subjected to, or who conduct, coronavirus testing. But, in the eighth paragraph, the article drops a bombshell statistic – South Korea’s coronavirus fatality rate is nearly five times lower than that reported globally – before returning to its narration:

“Health officials believe this approach may be saving lives. The fatality rate for coronavirus in South Korea is 0.7%. Globally the World Health Organization has reported 3.4% - but scientists estimate that the death rate is lower because not all cases are reported.”

The BBC story also mentions that South Korea has the highest per capita coronavirus testing of any country in the world.

The implication: with more widespread testing, more people with coronavirus who have either no, or very mild, symptoms are identified – making the number of deaths a smaller percentage of the number of recorded coronavirus cases. Thus, the fatality rates being widely reported by the media may be greatly exaggerated.

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