Going To Church Might Kill You: A new report from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) shows the danger of attending church during the coronavirus pandemic.
According to the recently released report, in one case, one-third of attendees at a church in Arkansas contracted COVID-19 during a six-day period in March.
NBC News reports:
Two people infected with COVID-19 spread the virus to more than 30 people during church gatherings in Arkansas in early March, before the first case was ever diagnosed in that state, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published Tuesday.
The cases illustrate how rapidly the virus can spread to others involved in faith-based organizations, and may have implications for places of worship as churches nationwide figure out how to reopen safely.
Commenting on the report, The Hill notes:
Thirty-eight percent of people who attended events at an Arkansas church over a six-day period in March contracted COVID-19, according to a report released Tuesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Of the 92 people who attended events at a rural Arkansas church between March 6 and March 11, 35 contracted COVID-19, and three died, the CDC said.
The concluding discussion from the CDC report states:
Faith-based organizations that are operating or planning to resume in-person operations, including regular services, funerals, or other events, should be aware of the potential for high rates of transmission of SARS-CoV-2.
And a tweet from the CDC reports:
After 2 people with #COVID19 attended church gatherings in Arkansas in early March, 35 attendees acquired the disease. Follow CDC guidelines & consult with local public health officials when resuming in-person operations.
After 2 people with #COVID19 attended church gatherings in Arkansas in early March, 35 attendees acquired the disease. Follow CDC guidelines & consult with local public health officials when resuming in-person operations. Learn more from @CDCMMWR: https://t.co/UebsNldIRR. pic.twitter.com/ib4fRxUXJD— CDC (@CDCgov) May 19, 2020
As for the particular danger churches pose during the coronavirus pandemic, Kevin Kavanagh, MD, writing for Infection Control Today, explains:
One of the cruelest characteristics of the coronavirus epidemic is that it strikes fear in the hearts and minds of many causing them to ask for comfort and protection from the God they believe in. And at the same time this virus has made a church service one of the most deadliest places to be in. The combination of singing in close quarters and decreased ventilation is nothing short of a petri dish (or cell plate) for viral growth.
Bottom line: A new report from the CDC illustrates the danger of attending church during the coronavirus pandemic.