Nightclubs are a ‘hotbed of Covid’ says Vine caller
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Kenneth Perry, a practicing physician and Medical Director of an Emergency Department in Charleston, South Carolina has said that unlike restaurants, bars allow large numbers of people to congregate and take off their masks in close proximity to each other. He said: “The volume of speaking is also much greater in a bar environment which will increase the likelihood of Coronavirus particles being transmitted further distances.”
Dr Kenneth acknowledges that the food and beverage industry has been significantly hit economically worldwide during the pandemic.
However he went on to tell Eat This, Not That mixed messaging and ever changing regulations are confusing for people.
Bars and nightclubs in the UK opened for the first time since March last year on July 19th, with late night venues not having been allowed to open at any point since the first lockdown began.
Current UK Government guidelines for bars and nightclub owners includes completing a COVID-19 risk assessment, providing adequate ventilation and cleaning more often however they are not required by law to enforce social distancing, mask wearing or the use of Covid tests or vaccine passports.
This is set to change, with an announcement on Monday from Boris Johnson that by the end of September, proof of full vaccination would be required when going to nightclubs and venues with ‘large crowds’.
A study published in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs which aimed to see if bars and nightclubs could properly mitigate COVID-19 transmission risks.
Authors concluded that: “Despite the efforts of bar operators and guidance from government, potentially significant risks of COVID-19 transmission persisted in a substantial minority of observed bars, especially when customers were intoxicated.”
Experts have also commented on this, saying that intoxicated people talk closer and lose a sense of personal space which of course increases risk especially in indoor bar spaces.
Despite these reports, the Government is facing backlash over the looming restrictions on these late-night industries.
Night Time Industries Association chief executive Michael Kill accused the Government of being “an absolute shambles”.
To him Covid passports would be too difficult to implement and lead to a significant reduction in spontaneous customers.
Statistics show that since July 19th Covid cases in the UK have increased dramatically.
On the so-called ‘freedom day’ weekend from 20th July cases stood at 46,125 dropping to only 39,315 on the 22nd July.
However, as we enter into August cases seem once again to be on a slow decline.
Despite warnings from Dr Kenneth about the dangers going to bars can impose, he urges people to get vaccinated.
He said: “It is difficult to know what areas of life will still have moderate risk until the majority of the population is vaccinated.”
The UK had given 84.9 million vaccination doses as of the 29th July, meaning 57.2 percent of the population is fully vaccinated.
First vaccines are now being offered to everyone aged 18 and above as well as children over the age of 12 who are at high risk of Covid.
According to data presented by the BBC an average of more than 170,000 second doses are now being given a day.
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