Quoted from razorsedge:
If the aim is to get closer to "realistic" mortality rates first we would need to multiply the "official confirmed" infection number by at least
The most reliable marker is to compare total death count over time - all causes considered. You can plot weekly number of deaths as a function of time and compare it to previous years. I have seen the graph in France, and Covid-19 translates into a significant increase over a few weeks. We are now back to basal levels thanks to a 8-week lockdown. The only time during the last 20 years when a very significant peak was found was during a heat wave in summer 2003, which killed 13,000 people in a matter of a few weeks (as compared to an estimated death count of 27,000 for Covid-19 for a current population of 67 million, about 1/5 of the US)
Even then, this peak is only visible in the most affected areas, where it led to a large increase in mortality of up to 200% - 3 times more death than normal. In comparison, the areas more or less free of the virus experienced a slightly lower than normal mortality, in part because of a 50% global decrease in car accident fatalities - traffic was very, very light ! So obviously even at the scale of a country of a size 15x smaller than the US, the virus was not felt the same way everywhere. At least here people in the spared regions don't believe it's fake because they did not experience saturated hospital and emergency burials...
It's also hard to compare countries (and perhaps states or counties), where the criteria used to include death as corona death may differ. For example some countries count every suspicious death with Covid symptoms as a Covid death, while other countries would require a positive PCR confirmation. As a result, the case fatality ratio is higher in Belgium than in Germany. Both ways make sense, but this difference makes comparisons difficult.