Early in the course of the penetration of the Covid-19 virus into the United States (in February 26-27, 2020), a drug company, Biogen, hosted a conference in Boston. The conference proved to be a super-spreader event. Ironically, some of the smartest people in medical science and technology gathered together and then spread out again, oblivious to the way in which their doing so was going to shake precisely that world.
The aftermath of the Biogen conference serves as a dramatic lesson in how “super-spreader” events can work, and so to how much care must be taken to avoid them. A lot of people from a lot of places mingling at close quarters, especially in an indoor venue, and then quickly dispersing again, is precisely the nightmare of infectious disease experts.
Biogen has said that it doesn’t dispute the findings of a recent study of the consequences of the event, and that it has accordingly cooperated with researchers.
In Pill Form:
Several of the attendees at the Biogen event had come in from European countries that had already experienced outbreaks of the pandemic. This proved to be a super-spreader event, with attendees then going home to states throughout the country, perhaps accounting for tens of thousands of eventual infections.