About 18 election rallies carried out by US President Donald Trump may have resulted in more than 30,000 COVID-19 cases and likely led to more than 700 deaths, as per a new study by Stanford University. Researchers stressed that the communities where Trump’s rallies took place “paid a high price in terms of disease and death.”
The study has been titled “The Effects of Large Group Meetings on the Spread of COVID-19: The Case of Trump Rallies”, and the researchers have concluded that Trump’s 18 rallies held between June 20 and September 22 “ultimately resulted in more than 30,000 incremental confirmed cases of COVID-19” and “likely led to more than 700 deaths”, which may or may not have been among attendees.
“Our analysis strongly supports the warnings and recommendations of public health officials concerning the risk of COVID-19 transmission at large group gatherings, particularly when the degree of compliance with guidelines concerning the use of masks and social distancing is low. The communities in which Trump rallies took place paid a high price in terms of disease and death,” researchers at Stanford University said in the study.
Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden reacted to a Twitter post on the study and said, “President Trump doesn’t care about you. He doesn’t even care about his own supporters.”
The study, published on Friday, mentioned that more than 8.7 million people have contracted COVID-19 in the US, resulting in more than 225,000 deaths.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has warned that large gatherings, particularly in places where the attendees are without masks or social distancing, pose a substantial risk of further spread of the virus.
“There is reason to fear that such gatherings can serve as ‘superspreader events’’, severely undermining efforts to control the pandemic,” it said.
Stanford University researchers said the purpose of the study is to highlight these issues by analysing the impact of Trump’s election rallies held between June 20 and September 30.