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Canadians end up in intensive care after attending ‘Covid party’, report says

Infectious disease experts say behaviour is ‘irresponsible’ and high risk

Gino Spocchia
Thursday 23 September 2021 20:11 BST
Alberta’s COVID-19 restriction reversal enters federal campaign

An unknown number of people were hospitalised following a “Covid party” in Alberta, Canada, in which participants allegedly wanted to achieve “herd immunity” from the deadly virus.

The party, which reportedly took place two hours outside of Edmonton, Alberta, two weeks ago, resulted in a number of people in hospital with Covid, and also in an ICU.

As City News Edmonton reported on Wednesday, the party took place with the aim of producing antibodies from Covid, and was advertised locally as a way of achieving so-called “herd immunity”.

It was not known if any of the participants were immunised before taking part in the event, or the number of people admitted to an already burdened ICU in Edmonton.

Loran Tyrell, an infectious disease doctor and director at the University of Alberta’s institute for virology, told the network that he was saddened to see that people had taken part in the “irresponsible” party.

“It is very sad and very irresponsible to think that you would get good immunity from the virus without getting serious disease,” said Dr Tyrell.

He noted that Covid “carries a mortality rate of around two per cent” and there were also cases of “long Covid”, and “people who’ve had symptoms for a long period of time”,

It is not advised to seek immunity or antibodies from Covid by becoming infected and falling ill with the virus, which has so far killed some 2,500 in Alberta, and 27,5000 across Canada since the beginning of the outbreak.

Ilan Schwartz, who is also an infectious diseases doctor at the University of Alberta, told Forbes that there was “no evidence that natural immunity is better than vaccine generated immunity” and that “the vaccine is much much safer than getting the virus”.

A study highlighted in the Journal of Emerging Infectious Diseases this month found that 36 per cent of those who recovered from Covid did not have any detectable levels of antibodies that are vital for fighting off a virus.

Reports of hospitalisations from the Edmonton ‘Covid party’ follow the first death of an 18-year-old from Covid in Alberta, and record breaking figures for hospital and ICU admissions, as the Edmonton Journal reported.

The Independent has approached Alberta’s health department for comment.

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