Of the billions of people that could end up falling ill, says Professor Gabriel Leung, about 51 million will likely die from it – as a conservative estimate. And as for communist China's data on the number of infections and deaths within its own borders, Leung is convinced that the Chicoms are hiding the true numbers and spinning their own false narrative for political purposes.
Despite the number of new coronavirus infections in China said to be experiencing a "slowdown," cases outside of China are on the rise like never before, with nearly 500 confirmed cases of coronavirus outside of China.
"Sixty per cent of the world's population is an awfully big number," Leung reportedly told The Guardian during a recent interview, referring to the lower end of his 60-80 percent global infection prediction.
World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus similarly told the media that we could be seeing only "the tip of the iceberg" in terms of just how far, and virulently, Wuhan coronavirus will continue to spread before things get any better with the situation.
In Leung's view, the scientific community's "overriding concern" with novel coronavirus is identifying the "size and shape" of this iceberg, meaning how much of the outbreak is still hiding underneath the surface just waiting to emerge unexpectedly.
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Leung's 51 million deaths prediction is based on a lower-end fatality estimate of just one percent. Should the actual percentage be closer to the 15 percent, or even 17 percent, predicted by others, the death tally when all is said and done could be closer to 600 million – or even more.
Time will tell, though, as scientists are still trying to determine whether or not communist China's draconian containment measures – which are basically martial law being applied to a population larger than the total number here in the United States – will have the effect of truly curbing the outbreak and tipping it into a true decline.
At an upcoming WHO meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, Leung and more than 400 other researchers and national authorities will reportedly participate, offering their expertise and insight into the situation. Some will attend in person, while others will participate via video conference from mainland Taiwan.
"Is 60-80 percent of the world's population going to get infected? Maybe not," Leung says. "Maybe this will come in waves. Maybe the virus is going to attenuate its lethality because it certainly doesn't help it if it kills everybody in its path because it will get killed as well."
Leung further warns that if the experts fail to identify the truth about the outbreak in its current state, there will be no stopping it from creating a worst-case scenario like the one he's predicting.
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