Eighteen members of a family who attended a surprise birthday party in North Texas, United States have tested positive for COVID-19.
The party, attended by 25 people and lasting just a few hours, has left one man’s father fighting for his life in the ICU, Miami news station WSVN-TV reported.
“When people started getting sick, we really let everyone have it,” Ron Barbosa, whose father is in the ICU, told WFAA-TV, as reported by WSVN-TV.
“We knew this was going to happen, I mean, this whole time this has been going on we’ve been terrified.”
Barbosa didn’t attend the May 30 party for his daughter-in-law because he was concerned about COVID-19 transmission.
Barbosa’s mother, who just swung by the party to drop off something, also tested positive for the virus and had to be admitted to the hospital.
Both of Barbosa’s parents are in their 80s.
His sister, who is battling breast cancer, also contracted the virus and has been hospitalized, WFAA-TV reported.
Apparently at the time, the partygoers were following the state’s guidelines for lowering the risk of COVID-19, the news outlet reported.
Amid a surge in cases and hospitalizations in the state, Gov. Greg Abbott halted the reopening of the state on Friday (June 26) and also rolled back some allowances — closing all bars again, for instance.
On Saturday, Texas recorded 6,079 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the state’s total to 148,845, with 2,406 related deaths.
The state’s positivity rate — the percentage of tests turning out positive — is continuing an alarming rise and is now at about 13.7% (on a 7-day rolling average).
An increasing positivity rate is a sign that transmission in your area is also increasing.
There are 10 times more COVID-19 infections in some parts of the U.S. than being reported, according to data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), The New York Times reported.
For instance, as of April 12, the prevalence of COVID-19 in South Florida was at just 1.85%, according to the CDC. That prevalence, however, is likely higher because of the current surge in infections, the Times said.
The highest prevalence, of 6.93%, was found in the New York City as of April 1. “This study underscores that there are probably a lot of people infected without knowing it, likely because they have mild or asymptomatic infection,” said study leader Dr. Fiona Havers, the Times reported. “But those people could still spread it to others.” In addition, the study highlights the fact that even in the hardest-hit regions, the majority of people have yet to be infected.