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Now You Can Calculate Your Chances of COVID Death, Researchers Say

Calculate your individual risk.

The death toll from COVID-19—more than 800,000 Americans—is far more than anyone envisioned at the beginning of the pandemic. And despite the fact that the Omicron variant produces milder disease than previous variants, if current trends hold, 50,000 to 300,000 more Americans may die before the Omicron surge ebbs in mid-March as expected. Are you at risk? Researchers have developed a tool to calculate your individual chance of dying after testing positive for COVID-19. Read on to find out more—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.


The Chances of Dying From COVID Now for Average Woman

Close-up of covid-19 infected patient in bed in hospital, coronavirus and ventilation.

A team of British researchers developed an online calculator called QCovid, which allows you to enter a person's age, height, weight, vaccination status, along with other major COVID risk factors such as diabetes or heart problems. For example:

A 55-year-old woman who is five-foot-three and weighs 170 pounds (the national average) has the following chances of dying after testing positive for COVID:

  • 1 in 3,185, if she has no major risk factors and is fully vaccinated
  • 1 in 317, if she has no major risk factors and is unvaccinated
  • 1 in 2,786, if she has heart disease and is fully vaccinated
  • 1 in 108, if she has diabetes and is unvaccinated


The Chances of Dying From COVID Now for Average Male

Man is lying on bed amidst essential workers.

A 65-year-old man who is five-foot-nine and weighs 198 pounds (also the national average) has these odds of dying after catching COVID:

  • 1 in 435, if he has no major risk factors and is fully vaccinated
  • 1 in 33, if he has no major risk factors and is unvaccinated
  • 1 in 435, if he has diabetes and is fully vaccinated
  • 1 in 28, if he has chronic obstructive lung disease and is unvaccinated

RELATED: Sure Signs You Previously Had COVID


Does Booster Lower Your Risk?


The scientists developed the tool in 2020 and updated it in June 2021, using data from people who'd had two vaccine doses. The risks might be even lower today, following the rollout of booster shots and the spread of the Omicron variant, which produces milder disease and has resulted in lower rates of hospitalization and death than earlier variants.

RELATED: This Simple Eye Test Can Reveal How Long You'll Live


Experts Still Urging Caution Today

Doctor nurse in protective face mask listening to breath with a stethoscope suspecting Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Recent CDC data indicates that the Omicron variant is 91% less likely than the Delta variant to result in death. But experts say that's not a cue to act like Omicron is harmless or that carries little risk. Remember, scientific models predict that 50,000 to 300,000 more Americans may die between now and mid-March. 

Experts emphasize it's not clear whether Omicron is less likely to cause "Long COVID," because mild illness doesn't necessarily equate to lower risk—with previous variants, people who reported getting only mildly ill still developed long COVID, a syndrome involving chronic fatigue and other symptoms that can be debilitating. 

And many people who've contracted Omicron say the "mild" illness it causes can still be pretty miserable. ("Mild" is a medical designation that just means not sick enough to be hospitalized.) 

RELATED: Signs You Have a "Hidden" Health Problem, According to Experts


How to Stay Safe Out There

A mid adult woman protects herself by placing an N95 face mask over her nose and mouth.

Follow the fundamentals and help end this pandemic, no matter where you live—get vaccinated ASAP; if you live in an area with low vaccination rates, wear an N95 face mask, don't travel, social distance, avoid large crowds, don't go indoors with people you're not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.

Michael Martin
Michael Martin is a New York City-based writer and editor. Read more about Michael
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