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Innumeracy and risk-perception in healthcare

Which of the following numbers represents the biggest risk of getting a disease? 1 in 100, 1 in 1000, or 1 in 10?

Almost 30% of Germans and 25% of Americans answered this question incorrectly in this study of statistical numeracy.

It’s an interesting reminder that healthcare professionals shouldn’t underestimate the statistical complexity of risk concepts: I think I’d previously have thought that these descriptions were fairly clear, but clearly they are not well understood.

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