A wedding in Maine has now been linked to 176 cases of COVID-19, leading to seven deaths of people who did not attend the wedding, CNN reports.
The spread is a sign of how deadly and quickly the virus can move throughout small communities, according to CNN.
The wedding — which took place in Millinocket, Maine, on Aug. 7 — had 65 guests, which is higher than the 50-person cap within the state.
The event led to an outbreak at a nursing home and jail more than 100 miles away. The infected people had secondary or tertiary contact with someone who attended the wedding, according to CNN.
Dora Anne Mills, chief health improvement officer at the state’s largest health care system, MaineHealth, and former director of the Maine CDC, told The Washington Post that small events like this mean that the virus “can tear these communities apart.”
Small events are still risky for contracting the novel coronavirus, which I wrote about ahead of Labor Day weekend for the Deseret News.
Experts told USA Today recently that little events have a big chance of spreading the virus.
- “People don’t think of it in the same way as the (President) Trump rally in Tulsa, a bunch of people on the beach or in the bars, but these small events add up to a lot. It’s just invisible,” Dr. Peter Chin-Hong, a professor of medicine at the University of California-San Francisco, told USA Today.
- “Small gatherings are a concern because there’s so many of them. They may account for a much greater proportion of the cases than we think right now,’’ said Dr. George Rutherford, a colleague of Chin-Hong’s at UCSF, told USA Today.