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Tags: gdp | death | epidemic | medical | study | research

Study: Best-Case Scenario 15M Dead, $2.4T GDP Hit

a world map showing the coronavirus impacts around the world

By    |   Saturday, 07 March 2020 09:41 AM EST

One best-case-scenario study suggests the coronavirus is going to ultimately kill 15 million people and a make a $2.4 trillion hit to world gross domestic product.

Australian National University looked at seven scenarios of how the global outbreak might impact humanity and world GDP, using a statistical model based on the Hong Kong flu from 1968 to 1969 that killed an estimated 1 million.

"Our scenarios show that even a contained outbreak could significantly impact the global economy in the short run," economics professor at ANU Warwick McKibbin wrote in the study. "In the case where Covid-19 develops into a global pandemic, our results suggest that the cost can escalate quickly.

"Even in the best-case scenario of a low-severity impact, the economic fallout is going to be enormous and countries need to work together to limit the potential damage as much as possible. This is particularly the case when it comes to the potential loss of life."

The highest-end prediction, using the Spanish flu from 1918 to 1920 that killed 17 million and cost GDP $50 million, projects 68 million dead and a GDP hit of $9 trillion, per the study.

The study was designed to spur world policymakers to take a serious approach to the coronavirus. The U.S. Congress has already passed $8.3 billion to address it.

"Our study shows the possible costs that can be avoided through global cooperative investment in public health in all countries," McKibbin wrote. "There needs to be vastly more investment in public health and development, especially in the poorest countries.

"All major countries need to participate actively. It is too late to attempt to close borders once the disease has taken hold in many other countries and a global pandemic has started."

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An Australian University's best-case-scenario study projects the coronavirus is going to ultimately kill 15 million and a $2.4 trillion hit to world GDP.
gdp, death, epidemic, medical, study, research
Saturday, 07 March 2020 09:41 AM
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