Health Care

Nebraska links seven coronavirus cases to Sturgis, SD, motorcycle rally

Nebraska links seven coronavirus cases to Sturgis, SD, motorcycle rally”

Fifteen Minnesota residents have contracted coronavirus after being exposed during the 10-day Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota.

"We now have 15 confirmed cases of covid-19 among Minnesotans who had been to Sturgis earlier this month, with one individual who was hospitalized", she said.

The health department did not immediately reply to a question about what other states have reported infections in people who attended the rally.

People who have tested positive visited multiple campgrounds and bars at the South Dakota event, Ehresmann said, so cases apparently can't be connected to any one location.

Motorcyclists ride through downtown Deadwood, South Dakota during the 80th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally on August 8, 2020.

Panhandle health officials identified the rally as the point of exposure and said at least seven cases were "scattered throughout" the Panhandle region of the state, the Scottsbluff Star-Herald reported.

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Department of Health officials did not give an exact number of rallygoers who tested positive, but they said it was under 25.

The South Dakota Department of Health on Tuesday had previously warned that a person tested positive for the virus after visiting One-Eyed Jack's Saloon on Main Street from noon to 5:30 p.m. on August 11 and was also able to pass the virus to others during that time period.

ABC affiliate KSTP reports "The state's health department has received reports from other states that people who traveled from the rally have tested positive, state epidemiologist Josh Clayton said".

Health experts were concerned that this year's Sturgis motorcycle rally could be a "super spreader" event. "Thousands of people attended that event, and so it's very likely that we'll see more transmission. Monitor yourself closely for symptoms; if you develop any, isolate until you can be tested", the agency tweeted Friday. It's one of several states that have seen an increase in new cases this past week compared to the week prior, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. City-sponsored events including parades, contests and live music were canceled, according to the city's website.

A request for comment from North Dakota health officials on whether any coronavirus cases in the state have been linked to the rally did not receive an immediate response Saturday.



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