Coronavirus Outbreak at Bachelorette Party Infects Everybody Except One Person

As novel coronavirus cases in the U.S. surpass 5.8 million, a cluster of new cases in Massachusetts has been linked to a wedding event held in Rhode Island.

All but one of 20 guests who attended the gathering—described to be a bachelorette party by the Rhode Island Department of Health—tested positive for COVID-19 following the event. Seventeen of those infected are from Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health said.

At a press briefing this week, Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker confirmed: "There was a wedding that we figured out through our contact tracing program that took place in Rhode Island where a number of people from Massachusetts went to it. Everybody who went to that wedding except one person tested positive for COVID."

Back in July, the group was reported to have rented a house in Rhode Island where the event was hosted, according to a spokesperson for the department, NBC 10 News reported.

The department confirmed "19 out of the 20 individuals in attendance have tested positive and include 17 cases in Massachusetts. Close contacts of the cases were identified and notified," in a statement to NBC 10 News.

A spokesperson for the Rhode Island Department of Health noted: "The group was almost entirely from Massachusetts. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health told us that many of the people who attended the bachelorette party got sick."

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health was reported to be overseeing the investigation as well as contact tracing for Massachusetts residents, while both states are managing cross-border investigations.

Baker warned that "unmasked, undistanced, unmanaged events," where the virus can spread more easily from person to person, is the state's biggest concern.

The governor said there were no immediate plans to move forward with the state's reopening, noting "I think we're going to pretty much stay where we are," at a press conference Tuesday, NBC Boston reported.

Confirmed cases in Massachusetts are climbing toward nearly 126,800, while Rhode Island has seen nearly 21,500 infections, as of Thursday, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University (JHU).

Average daily new cases in Massachusetts were on a downward trend in the recent two-week period from August 12 to 25. The figure mostly flattened out from mid-June, after mostly declining since late April, according to the latest report Thursday by JHU.

Rhode Island reported a statistical increase in average daily new cases in the same two-week period. The average daily case count mostly flattened out from early June, following a sharp decline since late April, according to JHU.

Boston Massachusetts protest May 2020 coronavirus
People outside the Massachusetts State House in Boston on May 4, 2020 protesting against lockdown measures and a new law requiring face coverings in public. Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images

The coronavirus has infected over 24.2 million people across the globe since the virus was first reported in Wuhan, China. More than 827,100 people have died following infection, while over 15.8 million have reportedly recovered, as of Thursday, according to JHU.

The graphic below, provided by Statista, illustrates the spread of COVID-19 cases in the U.S.

COVID-19 cases in U.S.

The graphic below, provided by Statista, illustrates the countries with the most COVID-19 cases.

COVID-19 cases across the globe