Massive protests fuel coronavirus concerns among health officials

Health officials worry that the protests may lead to a spike in coronavirus cases.

News 12 Staff

Jun 5, 2020, 11:53 AM

Updated 1,446 days ago

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The large daily protests over the death of George Floyd have sparked new concerns about the spread of the coronavirus. 
Health officials worry that the protests may lead to a spike in coronavirus cases. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are urging everyone who has taken part in a protest to get tested for COVID-19.
"I do think there is a potential, unfortunately, for this to be a seeding event," says Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the CDC.
Redfield says the risk of getting infected is more likely in larger cities that haven't controlled outbreaks.
"Minneapolis happens to be one that is still having significant transmission, D.C. is another one," says Redfield. "We really want those individuals to highly consider being evaluated."
Although some protesters wear masks, there's minimal social distancing within the crowds. In addition, tear gas that is sometimes used to control the crowds can make people cough and increase the likelihood of spreading the virus.
The CDC published a forecast this week that predicts more than 127,000 deaths in the U.S. by June 27. However, researchers say the data projects a decline in weekly coronavirus deaths.
PHOTOS: Photos from around the world over the death of George Floyd
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