UN: 95% of Europe's virus dead over 60 but young not immune
Geneva — More than 95% of those who have died of coronavirus in Europe have been over 60 but young people should not be complacent, the head of the World Health Organization's office in Europe said Thursday.
Dr. Hans Kluge said age is not the only risk factor for getting a severe case of the virus that has put billions under lockdown and upended the world economy.
“The very notion that COVID-19 only affects older people is factually wrong,” he said at an online news conference in Copenhagen. "Young people are not invincible.”
Those comments echoed similar statements from WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
The U.N. health agency says 10% to 15% of people under 50 with the disease have moderate or severe cases.
“Severe cases of the disease have been seen in people in their teens or 20s, with many requiring intensive care and some unfortunately passing away,” Kluge said.
He said recent statistics showed 30,098 people have been reported to have died in Europe, mostly in Italy, France and Spain.
“We know that over 95% of these deaths occurred in those older than 60 years,” he said, with more than half of the dead over 80.
Kluge said more than 80% of those who died had at least one other chronic underlying condition like cardiovascular disease, hypertension or diabetes.
“On a positive note, there are reports of people over the age of 100 who were admitted to hospital for COVID-19 and have now — since — made a complete recovery,” he said.
Stories that may interest you
Nearly 1.9 million people applied for U.S. unemployment benefits last week, evidence that many employers are still cutting jobs even as the gradual reopening of businesses has slowed the pace of layoffs
For weeks, President Donald Trump has been eager to publicly turn the page on the coronavirus pandemic
Joe Biden is pledging to unveil a series of proposals in coming weeks aimed at reversing the economic devastation wrought by the pandemic and addressing inequalities sparking protests sweeping the country
All of our stories about the coronavirus are being provided free of charge as a service to the public. You can find all of our stories here.