Why would a country share of global GDP have anything to do with a disease being on trace to become pandemic ?
Do you think 10 000 000 cases in India are intrinsically less worrying than 1 000 000 in China ? Or 200 000 in the USA ?
That’s a great question! First, this checklist is very much a pilot effort, and I welcome this sort of interrogation and feedback.
My rationale is that GDP is what allows us to make the products to fight the virus. In addition, an infection that hammers high-GDP countries is more likely to disrupt global supply chains, compounding the virus’s effects. We tend to label as “pandemics” diseases that affect industrialized nations. Part of my motivation for the original checklist was to anticipate not only the disease burden, but also the intensity of social response (stock market, government).The total GDP of affected countries seems much more clearly linked to that social response, and worth including for this reason.
That said, this has been critiqued (https://www.statnews.com/2021/07/06/why-arent-diseases-like-hiv-and-malaria-which-still-kill-millions-of-people-a-year-called-pandemics/), and that critique is strong and one I’m very sympathetic to.
To be fair I think the GDP is a significant criterion for a highly contagious disease because the richest people tend to travel more both inside and outside their country, and hence spread the disease faster. Just the way you wrote it sounds weird.
Speaking of a HIV pandemy seems justified. Malaria is very different in fact it’s definitely endemic rather than pandemic—some places have malaria, some don’t.