A doctor in Texas is sharing the last words of a 30-year-old man who died after contracting the coronavirus at a so-called “COVID party” with friends who shared his belief that the pandemic was a hoax.
Dr. Jane Appleby, the chief medical officer for Methodist Hospital and Methodist Children’s Hospital in San Antonio, opened up this week about the unnamed man who had fallen seriously ill after contracting the coronavirus. As The Independent reported, Appleby said the patient informed nurses that he went to a party hosted by someone who had tested positive for the virus, but the man didn’t believe it was a risk.
The millennial ended up contracting the virus and fell seriously ill. As the 30-year-old was on his deathbed, he came to regret the decision to attend the so-called “COVID party,” she said.
“I think I made a mistake,” Appleby recalled the man saying while on his deathbed. “I thought this was a hoax, but it’s not.”
The doctor said the man and friends wanted to attend the party “to see if the virus is real and if anyone gets infected.” Appleby said she is sharing the man’s story in the hope that others will hear it and realize the virus is very serious and can be deadly even for those who are young and in otherwise good health. She told people to wear masks in public, to stay at home as much as possible, and avoid group settings.
There had been other reports of young people holding “coronavirus parties,” with officials in the state of Alabama warning that some young people had been holding them there. These claims have come into question, Wired noted, pointing out that reports of these parties have popped up in other states with no concrete evidence to back that they are actually happening.
Officials in Texas did not reveal the identity of the man who died after attending the alleged “COVID party” and also did not say if others who attended the party had tested positive.
But public health officials have warned that young people in social settings — especially ones where alcohol is involved — make for a very dangerous mix. They have warned that bars are among the most dangerous places for the coronavirus to spread, as they are enclosed settings where people are drinking and often not paying enough attention to social distancing. As a result, some states have moved to place new restrictions on those establishments.