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More than 70 people in Wisconsin test positive for coronavirus after attending a ‘large gathering’

More than 70 people in Wisconsin test positive for coronavirus after admitting they attended a ‘large gathering’ in the state – around same time hundreds turned out for anti-lockdown protest

  • Wisconsin’s Department of Health Services said 72 people who tested positive for COVID-19 on or after April 26 attended a large gathering not long before 
  • On April 24, thousands of anti-lockdown protesters gathered outside the capitol building in Madison demanding an end to Gov Evers’ lockdown
  • Demonstrators were pictured ignoring social distancing rules and shunning face masks at the mass rally
  • It was one of the largest anti-lockdown rallies to take place across the country
  • At the time there were 5,356 cases and 262 deaths in the state
  • As of Wednesday, there are 10,611 cases and the death toll has reached 418
  • The DHS has not specifically tracked whether the ‘large gathering’ was the rally so it is not possible to confirm individuals contracted the virus there 
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

More than 70 people in Wisconsin have tested positive for coronavirus after admitting they attended a ‘large gathering’ in the state – around the same time that thousands of protesters were pictured ignoring social distancing and shunning face masks at a mass anti-lockdown rally.

The state’s Department of Health Services (DHS) confirmed that 72 individuals who were diagnosed with the deadly virus on or after April 26 had all attended a large gathering not long before their diagnosis. 

‘We were able to pull some limited data – out of 1,986 cases with onset/diagnosis on or after 4/26, there were seventy-two cases who reported attending a large gathering,’ DHS spokesperson Jennifer Miller told The Progressive.  

Two days earlier on April 24, thousands of protesters gathered outside Wisconsin’s capitol building in Madison demanding Democratic Governor Tony Evers reopen the state for business.

More than 70 people in Wisconsin have tested positive for coronavirus after admitting they attended a ‘large gathering’ in the state – around the same time that thousands of protesters were pictured ignoring social distancing and shunning face masks at a mass anti-lockdown rally (pictured)

A man holds a sign and shuns a face mask at the rally on April 24, when thousands of protesters gathered outside Wisconsin's capitol building in Madison demanding Democratic Governor Tony Evers reopen the state for business

A man holds a sign and shuns a face mask at the rally on April 24, when thousands of protesters gathered outside Wisconsin’s capitol building in Madison demanding Democratic Governor Tony Evers reopen the state for business

Pictures from the rally revealed swarms of protesters, many of them sporting Donald Trump paraphernalia and American flags, with few wearing face masks and most packed in close together, defying health guidelines to stay six feet from each other.   

It marked one of the largest anti-lockdown rallies to take place across the country.  

At the time there were 5,356 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Wisconsin and 262 people had died.

As of Wednesday, cases have almost doubled to 10,611 and the death toll has reached 418.

The DHS has gathered the data on the individual cases as part of the state’s contact tracing program, but has not specifically tracked what the large gatherings people attended were.  

Swarms of people gathered outside the statehouse (pictured). It was one of the largest anti-lockdown rallies to take place across the country

Swarms of people gathered outside the statehouse (pictured). It was one of the largest anti-lockdown rallies to take place across the country 

Pictures from the rally revealed swarms of protesters, many of them sporting Donald Trump paraphernalia and American flags, with few wearing face masks and most packed in close together, defying health guidelines to stay six feet from others

Pictures from the rally revealed swarms of protesters, many of them sporting Donald Trump paraphernalia and American flags, with few wearing face masks and most packed in close together, defying health guidelines to stay six feet from others

This means it is not possible to confirm that any or all of the individuals were present at the Reopen Wisconsin rally.

‘Possible exposures during protests haven’t been specifically added to the database because we already ask about large gatherings,’ Miller told The Progressive.

‘Contact tracers do ask if patients attended mass gatherings, but not specifically about protests, so there’s really no data on who may have contracted COVID-19 at a protest.’ 

Miller added: ‘No, it doesn’t specifically state that the 72 were at a rally, but this is the data we have.’  

The DHS did measure coronavirus cases against attendance at polling stations (above)

The DHS did measure coronavirus cases against attendance at polling stations (above)

DailyMail.com has reached out to the DHS for comment and for clarification on their criteria for a ‘large gathering’.

The failure to track confirmed cases against attendance at the anti-lockdown rally comes as it emerged the DHS did measure cases against attendance at polling stations.

The data revealed 67 people tested positive for coronavirus after voting in person at polling stations across the state on April 7, reported The Progressive. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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