From iSteve commenter Visionary:
Steve, I’m a physician in NYC, and want to know what your take is:
I’m wondering if people who are being hospitalized and who are likely to crump are much more likely to be those who have co-infections with COVID and influenza, *particularly if they have no comorbidities or are not old*.
I think that is what explains why the US has hospitalizations rates break down the way they do (which was confusing me), why Italy is getting hammered all at once, and why places like South Korea and Japan have ridiculously low hospitalization rates of people, particularly those who are young.
The US vaccinates the elderly the most (pretty well to be fair), the young (6-17) second most, 50-65 third most, and the lowest people from 18-49 (basically only 25-30 percent of people).
South Korea vaccinates an insane amount of the old, and pretty much is better than us even in the young. Japan isn’t so great BUT South Korea and Japan also tend to have low rates of influenza.
Italy sucks at vaccinating the elderly (they’re waaay worse than us) and pretty much everyone else too, plus they have high influenza incidence rates.
So you get a situation where South Korea and Japan have low hospitalization rates, with SK doing amazingly well, we have PREFERENTIALLY elevated hospitalization rates of our young between 18-49 (since we don’t vaccinate them very well), and Italy gets hospitalization of basically everyone, but the ones who get hammered are the elderly who are not vaccinated since they’re at highest risk a priori.
The tip off is multifold:
First: when you look at our non-overwhelmed death rate after hospitalization due to influenza and coronavirus, it’s almost literally the same (7-8 percent). This suggests …