“No evidence” Lollapalooza was a super-spreader event, top Chicago doctor says
The 2021 edition of Lollapalooza happened amid concerns over the surging Delta variant of COVID, and while the festival required that attendees present proof of vaccination or a negative test result to enter, many worried it would act as a "super-spreader" event similar to last year's Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. In a news conference on Thursday (8/13), two weeks after Lollapalooza, Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady said that there was "no evidence" that Lollapalooza had been a super-spreader event, NBC New York reports.
"We've had no unexpected findings at this point, there's no evidence at this point of a super-spreader event and there's no evidence of substantial impact to Chicago's COVID epidemiology," Arwady said.
She said that 203 festival attendees, including 58 from Chicago, 138 from other parts of Illinois, and 7 from out of state, have since reported testing positive for COVID. "Among unvaccinated attendees, we did as expected see a higher rate of COVID cases but it was still low," she said. "Among unvaccinated Lollapalooza attendees, we estimate 0.0016% or 16 in 10,000 attendees, 76 unvaccinated attendees reporting tested positive. And as of yesterday we had no hospitalizations or deaths reported, we do continue to follow up."
"Where we look at our Chicago cases, 58 of them at this point, really important to note, not just for Lolla but for everybody in Chicago: 13 of those cases, 22%, did report attending Lolla on or after the day their symptoms began," she continued. "This is a really important reminder, we need everybody in Chicago not to ignore symptoms, assume it's a summer cold, regardless of your vaccination status because we know vaccines are not 100% protective."