A number of news sources are reporting the Australia's Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Professor Paul Kelly, when speaking to the media yesterday, indicated Australia’s death toll from the coronavirus could hit 50,000 with millions infected, based on the Morrison government’s more conservative predictions.
It’s the figure that the Prime Minister has consistently declined to provide, despite predictions in New South Wales that more than 1.5 million people could catch the virus.
Scott Morrison has repeatedly declined to publicly reveal the government modelling for weeks – despite releasing graphs on Sunday that predict the daily demand on GPs and hospitals for coronavirus testing and treatment could hit 300,000 patients a day
.But the deputy chief medical officer Paul Kelly came close to nominating the potential death toll on Monday when he conceded anywhere between 20 and 60 per cent of the nation’s citizens could contract the disease.
“It’s something in the range. I’m not going to speculate on the actual numbers,” Professor Kelly is reported to havesaid.
“The death rate is around one per cent. You can do the maths.”
Based on the more conservative prediction of one in five Australians contracting the virus, that would result in five million people being infected and around 50,000 deaths based on a 1 per cent death rate.
However, if 60 per cent of the population was infected – an unlikely prospect according to NSW Health – the death toll could rise to 150,000 people and 15 million patients overwhelming GPs and hospitals.