Researchers are questioning the validity of a study concerning the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. The original study claims countless cases of COVID-19.
Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Cases
The original study claimed that the event led to over 260,000 new cases across the nation. It reportedly cost over $12.2 billion in public health costs.
The Associated Press reportedly confirmed only 290 cases associated with the event. Furthermore, the scientists published a paper with their findings. They found the original study relatively week and it should be interpreted cautiously. They do agree that cases spiked because of the large-scale event but do not believe it is over 260,000.
“The case data show relatively stable trends prior to the event and clear changes around the event, with little reason to believe that the changes in cases could have been caused by anything but the event,” the Johns Hopkins researchers wrote. “The overall conclusions that the Sturgis event caused a large increase in COVID-19 cases and infections are likely to be relatively robust to the specific statistical methodologies used.”
There were a few flaws in the original study that could have skewed numbers. They did not compare geographical areas to other nearby areas. The spike in cases could have resulted from testing prior to the event. Finally, the cost of $12 billion is skewed. It fails to reflect the cost of care in different parts of the country with different procedures.
The Original Study
The rally itself drew in over half a million people and raised concerns over the potential spread. Four economists from the Center for Health Economics and Policy Studies at San Diego State University wrote the report.
They took the average cost of a person who tests positive with COVID-19. Finally, the average American who tests positive for the virus would pay roughly $46,000 for testing and treatment.