Contact Tracings Show Risk Of Coronavirus Spread Through Churches
Rachel Maddow looks at how contact tracings have taught us that church gatherings have been a particular point of vulnerability for the spread of coronavirus in the United States, a fact not changed by Donald Trump's posturing. Aired on 05/22/2020.
Rachel Maddow looks at how the coronavirus is spreading to rural areas of the United States where smaller populations do not necessarily mean greater safety and where hospital resources can be more challenging. Aired on 04/08/2020. Farmers in the United States are regarded as being in a high-risk group for the coronavirus pandemic.
That is despite working in the vast, open fields of the so-called "farm belt" in the midwest.
Farmers there fear shortages of food and labour if the virus spreads into their rural communities.
Al Jazeera's John Hendren reports from Chicago. Rachel Maddow tells the story of a Los Angeles nursing home that was able to test all of its residents and employees for coronavirus and found a startlingly large number of positive cases that had not previously been apparent through symptoms. Aired on 4/24/2020. New research in China shows that coronavirus can remain in the semen of men who have been formerly diagnosed with the illness.
IT HAS BEEN THIS WAY FROM THE VERY BEGINNING. CONTACT TRACING HAS TOLD US SO. WELL, VIOLA HORTON, ATTENDED A RURAL CHURCH SERVICE AT A BAPTIST CONGREGATION IN RURAL MARION COUNTY WEST VIRGINIA AT MARCH 15th. HER SISTER WAS THE REVEREND AT THE CHURCH AND CELEBRATING HER ANNIVERSARY AS THE LEADER OF THAT CHURCH. THAT GATHERING AT THAT ONE CHURCH IN WEST VIRGINIA, THAT ONE DAY, IS ESTIMATED TO HAVE INFECTED 30% OF THE PEOPLE WHO WERE IN ATTENDANCE. FIVE PEOPLE WHO ATTENDED THAT CHURCH CELEBRATION THAT ONE DAY WERE HOSPITALIZED BY THE END OF THE FIRST WEEK AFTER THAT SERVICE. MS. HORTON WAS DEAD WITHIN TWO WEEKS OF THAT SERVICE, AND SHE WAS THE FIRST PERSON IN WEST VIRGINIA WHO IS KNOWN TO HAVE DIED FROM CORONAVIRUS. LAST MONTH IN KENTUCKY, HEALTH OFFICIALS TRACED MORE THAN 30 CORONAVIRUS CASES AND THREE DEATHS, AND COMMUNITY SPREAD OF THE DISEASE ACROSS MULTIPLE COUNTIES, INCLUDING INTO A KENTUCKY MEAT PACKING PLANT, THEY TRACED ALL OF THOSE CASES BACK TO A SINGLE CHURCH REVIVAL MEETING, IN HOPKINS COUNTY, KENTUCKY. IN CALIFORNIA, RIGHT NOW, A SINGLE CHURCH SERVICE ON MOTHER’S DAY IS BEING BLAMED FOR NEW CLUSTERS OF THE VIRUS IN LAKE COUNTY AND MENDOCINO COUNTY, CALIFORNIA. IN BUTTE COUNTY, CALIFORNIA, RIGHT NOW, THEY ARE TRYING TO TRACK DOWN 180 PEOPLE WHO ATTENDED A CONGREGATE CHURCH SERVICE IN PERSON IN DEFIANCE OF THE PUBLIC HEALTH ORDER IN THAT STATES, THAT PROHIBITED SUCH GATHERINGS. PUBLIC HEALTH OFFICIALS ARE TRYING TO FIND EVERYBODY WHO WENT TO THAT CHURCH SERVICE, BECAUSE THEY LEARNED THAT AT LEAST ONE PERSON AT THAT SERVICE TESTED POSITIVE THE DAY AFTER THAT SERVICE, AND SO THEY’RE NOW TRYING TO CONTACT TRACE THE WHOLE CONGREGATION, BECAUSE AT THAT EVENT, IT SEEMS LIKE THEY WERE ALL EXPOSED. LAST MONTH, ONE OF THE FIRST CDC FORMAL REPORTS, FIRST REPORT TRACING A LARGE CLUSTER OF CASES IN CHICAGO, IDENTIFIED ONE CHURCH SERVICE ON ONE DAY, AS ONE OF THE PLACES WHERE DOCUMENTED NEW INFECTIONS TOOK PLACE. THE NEW ONE THAT CAME OUT FROM CDC THIS WEEK TRACES ANOTHER CLUSTER TO A CHURCH IN RURAL ARKANSAS, WHERE THE PASTOR AND HIS WIFE DID NOT KNOW THAT THEY WERE INFECTED BUT THEY WERE, AND OVER THE COURSE OF ONE WEEK, THEY INFECTED 38% OF THEIR CONGREGATION, AND SO FAR, THREE PEOPLE HAVE DIED. I WAS ALSO SURPRISED TO LEARN THIS TODAY ABOUT WHAT NOW COUNTS AS THE WORST OUTBREAK IN THE COUNTRY, THE OUTBREAK AT THE NAVAJO NATION, WHICH STANS PARTS OF THREE DIFFERENT STATES, A LITTLE BIT OF UTAH, ALSO NEW MEXICO, AND ARIZONA, AND THE ARIZONA REPUBLIC DID GREAT WORK TODAY TEASING OUT OF THE DATA GEOGRAPHICCALLY SPECIFIC INFORMATION ABOUT THAT OUTBREAK ON THE NAVAJO NATION TO TRY TO FIGURE OUT HOW BAD IT IS THERE, BUT HOW BAD IT IS COMPARED WITH OTHER PARTS OF THE COUNTRY AND WHAT THE ARIZONA REPUBLIC WAS ABLE TO FIND IS THAT IN THE NORTHERN, PARTICULARLY ISOLATED PART, OF THE NAVAJO NATION, THE NUMBER OF CASES PER POPULATION IN SPECIFIC REGIONS THERE IS HIGHER THAN EVEN IN THE WORST-HIT ZIP CODES IN NEW YORK CITY. AND NAVAJO HEALTH OFFICIALS ALSO SAY THAT THAT WORST-HIT REGION WITHIN NAVAJO NATION IS WHERE THEY THINK THE NAVAJO NATION OUTBREAK BEGAN, AND THEY HAVE TRACED THE BEGINNING OF THE NAVAJO NATION OUTBREAK, WHICH AGAIN IS THE WORST ONE IN THE COUNTRY, THEY HAVE TRACED IT BACK TO A SPECIFIC CHURCH REVIVAL MEETING, ON A SPECIFIC DAY, IN EARLY MARCH, IN THE NAVAJO NATION. THAT’S WHERE THEY BELIEVE IT TOOK HOLD. AND NOW AGAIN, THAT IS THE WORST OUTBREAK IN AMERICA, WORST PER CAPITA, THAN THE HARDEST-HIT ZIP CODES IN NEW YORK CITY. SO WHEN THE PRESIDENT TODAY POUNDED HIS CHEST A LITTLE BIT AND ANNOUNCED THAT HE WILL INSIST, AS PRESIDENT, THAT ALL CHURCH SERVICES BE HELD IN PERSON, THIS WEEKEND, ALL OVER THE COUNTRY, AND HE WILL SOMEHOW MAGICALLY OVERRIDE ANY STATE RULE, THAT WOULD SEEK TO PROHIBIT THAT KIND OF A GATHERING, I MEAN THE PRESIDENT, YOU KNOW, KNOWS WHAT HE’S PLAYING WITH IN DOING THAT. THIS HAS BEEN AN OUTLOUD DOCUMENTED UP FRONT PART OF OUR EXPERIENCE IN THIS EPIDEMIC FROM THE VERY BEGINNING. AND NO, THE PRESIDENT DOES NOT HAVE THE POWER TO OVERRULE STATE PUBLIC HEALTH RULES AND DEMAND THAT ALL CHURCHES HOLD IN PERSON SERVICES BUT HIM TRYING TO CREATE THE IMPRESSION THAT HE HAS THAT POWER WILL HAVE SOME OF THAT EFFECT ANYWAY. AND SO, YOU KNOW, WE WILL SEE WHAT THE PRESIDENT HAS WROUGHT FOR THIS WEEKEND IN AMERICA, IN THE MIDDLE OF THE WORST EPIDEMIC ON EARTH. AND THEN IN, WHAT, THREE WEEKS OR SO, IN SOME PLACES, IF WE’RE LUCKY, WE WILL BE ABLE TO DO THE CONTACT TRACING FOR WHAT HAPPENS THIS WEEKEND. AND ONCE THEY’VE DONE THE CONTACT TRACING, PRESUMABLY WE WILL BE ABLE TO GIVE HIM ALL THE CREDIT HE DESERVES FOR WHAT WILL HAPPEN THIS WEEKEND BECAUSE WE KNOW WHAT WILL HAPPEN AT CHURCH SERVICES HELD IN THE OPEN IN CONGREGATE THIS WEEKEND, WE KNOW WHAT WILL HAPPEN BECAUSE WE’RE ALREADY LIVING THROUGH IT AT A SMALLER SCALE FROM EARLIER ON IN THIS EPIDEMIC IN AMERICA, WHEN THE TOTAL NUMBER OF CASES IN THE COMMUNITY WAS SMALLER THAN IT IS RIGHT NOW. WE ALREADY KNOW WHAT CHURCH SERVICES HAVE DONE, IN TERMS OF CREATING WHAT TURN INTO LARGE CLUSTERS. IN ONE CASE, WHICH TURNS, INTO