Editor's Note: A link to the CDC to show the decreasing mortality of COVID-19 peaking in April has been added to this post. We have also corrected the post to reflect that a declining mortality rate is not the only factor in determining whether the CDC will continue to refer to COVID-19 as an 'epidemic.'
The coronavirus mortality rate in the United States has continued to drop for the last several weeks. Should the dropping mortality rate continue, in combination with other factors, it is possible the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may have to consider no longer classifying COVID-19 an 'epidemic.'
The agency explained last Friday that the COVID-19 mortality rate has dropped so low that "the percentage is currently at the epidemic threshold."
"Based on death certificate data, the percentage of deaths attributed to pneumonia, influenza or COVID-19 (PIC) decreased from 9.0% during week 25 to 5.9% during week 26, representing the tenth week of a declining percentage of deaths due to PIC," the agency wrote on its website.
According to the CDC, an "epidemic" is "an increase, often sudden, in the number of cases of a disease above what is normally expected in that population in that area." A "pandemic" is an epidemic happening on a global scale.
The CDC's update is good news.
The media has been stoking panic for weeks over an increase in cases across the Sun Belt, which has been partly driven by record levels of testing.
However, national data show, as the CDC explained, that the mortality rate for COVID-19 has steadily decreased nationwide after peaking in late April.
That metric, in conjunction with antibody tests that consistently show scores more people have likely contracted COVID-19 than testing data reflects, means that the mortality rate for COVID-19 is likely much lower than current testing calculations would suggest.
In fact, Dr. Scott Atlas explained on Fox News Monday that current testing data is deceptive.
Dr. Atlas said the real story is not "how many cases" but "who gets the cases." And as the median age for COVID-positive patients craters, that means the American population is potentially developing so-called "herd immunity," according to Dr. Atlas.