Coronavirus cases linked to wedding reception in Maine more than doubled in one week

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In addition, a second person linked to the outbreak died from the virus last week, Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention spokesperson Robert Long told CNN.

The wedding took place less than a month ago, in Millinocket on August 7. Since then, cases have spread to a retirement home and a prison, both more than 160 km from the location.

Last week, the Maine CDC said 60 cases were linked to marriage, but this week it had updated that number to 56. Now there are 144 cases of coronavirus linked to what was supposed to be a joyous event. , more than doubling the cases.

The investigation into the marriage epidemic is still at 56 cases between the guests and their secondary and tertiary contacts. Secondary contacts are people who have had close contact with someone who has attended and tertiary contacts are people who have had close contact with a secondary.

Covid case in a prison and a retirement home

The agency announced last week that there had been outbreaks at Maplecrest Rehabilitation Center in Madison and York County Jail in Alfred, both linked to the wedding event.

Now 72 people logged into York County Jail have tested positive for the virus, Long said. Of these, 46 are inmates, 19 work in the prison and seven are household members of these prison employees.

The prison is over 350 km from where the reception took place. The Maine CDC has been investigating the outbreak in the prison since Aug.21.

The outbreak at Maplecrest Rehabilitation and Living Center in Madison, which is more than 100 miles from the wedding venue, has also increased, according to the Maine CDC.

A nursing home worker is a secondary case associated with the marriage epidemic. Sixteen people from Maplecrest have tested positive, including this person.

“We are dealing with a giant tube of glitter. You open a tube of glitter in your basement, then two weeks later you’re in the attic and all you find is glitter and you don’t know how they got there, ”Maine CDC Director, Dr Nirav Shah said on Aug 25.

“This is what Covid-19 looks like. You crack open glitter in Millinocket and the next thing you know, you find traces of it at a York County jail complex. It’s just emblematic of the speed, silence and efficiency of their propagation.

Cited wedding venue

The wedding guests attended a reception at the Big Moose Inn, according to the Maine CDC. The Big Moose Inn is a 37-acre property that includes a restaurant, cabins, and campgrounds near Baxter State Park. The hostel has been hosting weddings since the 1970s and can accommodate 100 people in their Fredericka restaurant, according to their website.

Shah said last week that they were investigating other points of connection with the group, including the ceremony that took place at the Baptist Church in Tri Town.

The Maine CDC said the wedding reception had about 65 guests, in violation of state requirements for large gatherings which are currently capped at 50 for indoor events. On Thursday, the Maine CDC said it had issued an imminent health hazard citation to Big Moose Inn owners for the violation.

The Big Moose Inn said it misinterpreted state social distancing rules in a statement sent to CNN on August 29.

“We understood that there could not be more than 50 people in our largest room. We made a mistake in interpreting this rule, ”the venue said in the statement. “Our interpretation was that we could organize a wedding party of more than 50 people and divide them between two rooms as long as it did not exceed our total capacity or the capacity of a specific room. “

CNN’s Lauren del Valle, Anna Sturla, Rebekah Riess, Laura Ly, and Dave Alsup contributed to this report.

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