How will widespread vaccinations affect concerts, weddings and other large gatherings?


As millions continue to get vaccinated for COVID-19, the nation could be one step closer to a pre-pandemic lifestyle.

However, it may take a bit until gatherings, such as concerts and weddings, regain a sense of normalcy.

What will widespread vaccinations mean for concerts, weddings, and other large gatherings?

President Joe Biden said United States would have enough doses to safely vaccinate every American for COVID-19 by the end of May, two months earlier than he predicted just weeks ago.

Dr. Daniel Havlichek, former chief of the College of Human Medicine's Infectious Diseases Division at Michigan State University, said it is possible that hundreds of people could gather this summer for an indoor event, but he advises that there is a catch.

The doctor told Newsweek that it is going to depend on the specific event.

When 30 percent of the population isn't vaccinated, Havlichek said many people who attend a basketball game could cause issues. At tournaments, many people are yelling and screaming. For concerts, people are typically singing. However, he said a movie or orchestra can be different while people are generally quiet.

As for weddings, the doctor had a different answer.

"With weddings, I think here is a bit to be determined but there's a lot of other things I think will be able to be opened up," Havlichek said explaining that the dancing, singing and close contact could pose a problem.

Jon Andrus, a global health professor at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University, said due to many people receiving their vaccines, there is an opportunity for more gatherings. However, he suggests not throwing away your face masks due to COVID-19 variants.

Earlier this month, Dr. Anthony Fauci was cautiously optimistic and said that some sense of normalcy could return by the end of the year.

Activities such as safe indoor dining or attending a movie may be possible “somewhere between the fall and the end of the year,” while a return to life as it used to be may be closer to “the end of the year, by Christmas,” he noted.

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