Swine flu is worse in Mexico, but why? | World | Chron.com - Houston Chronicle
The math in the Mexico cases is disturbing. If the mortality rate holds, this is one of the most lethal influenza strains ever. If the mortality rate is in actuality closer to the Spanish Influenza rate of 2.5%, then there are some 1800 unreported (and thus wholly uncontained) cases.In Mexico, about 70 deaths out of roughly 1,000 cases represents a fatality rate of about 7 percent. The Spanish flu pandemic of 1918-19, which killed an estimated 50 million worldwide, had a fatality rate of about 2.5 percent.
It's either more lethal and less virulent, or more virulent and less lethal. Somehow, neither combination seems especially comforting.
However, one thing that has been unreported/unnoticed thus far is that Mexican authorities are not pretending there is no crisis as the Chinese government did during the SARS outbreak some years back. Especially given the speculations of some (including myself) that Mexico could be on the verge of becoming a failed state, it is worth noting that they appear to be taking the influenza outbreak seriously.