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NY Times cites report saying NFL games with fans caused COVID spikes


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https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/06/sports/football/nfl-stadium-capacity-covid.html

 

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“All of us in the N.F.L. want to see every one of our fans back,” Goodell said in a conference call with reporters.
 

Yet new research submitted to The Lancet, a scientific journal, in late March suggested that there was a link between the games that had large numbers of fans in the stands and an increase in the number of infections in locales near the stadiums. The study, which is being peer reviewed, is one of the most comprehensive attempts to address the potential impact of fans at N.F.L. games.
 

The authors, led by Justin Kurland of the University of Southern Mississippi, used the number of positive cases not just from the counties where the 32 N.F.L. teams play, but also from surrounding counties to track the spread among fans who may have traveled to games from farther away. After adjusting the figures to eliminate potential false positives and days when counties did not report cases, they found surges in infection rates in the second and third weeks following N.F.L. games that were played with more than 5,000 fans in attendance. The study does not prove a causal link between fan attendance and Covid-19 cases, but suggests that there may be a relationship between the two.

 

“The evidence overwhelmingly supports that fan attendance at N.F.L. games led to episodic spikes” in the number of Covid-19 cases, the researchers wrote.

 

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"The study does not prove a causal link between fan attendance and Covid-19 cases, but suggests that there may be a relationship between the two."   Solid science there.  There's numerous ot

Would that still be the case if fans are now fully vaccinated?  Perhaps the answer is to let only allow people who have been fully vaccinated to attend then.

Now let me understand this.  You're talking about this, I presume: https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/medical/lancet-retracts-major-covid-19-paper-that-raised-safety-concerns-about-malaria-dru

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"The study does not prove a causal link between fan attendance and Covid-19 cases, but suggests that there may be a relationship between the two."

 

Solid science there.  There's numerous other factors that could've lead to a spike in cases.

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45 minutes ago, Big Turk said:

Would that still be the case if fans are now fully vaccinated?  Perhaps the answer is to let only allow people who have been fully vaccinated to attend then.

 

No, should not, given the recent CDC study doing weekly testing of 4,000 HCW and showing that vaccines prevented 90% of all infections, not just symptomatic infections.  You not infected, you can't spread disease.

 

I also haven't gotten deep enough into it to see whether they looked at the impact of testing all the attendees as the Bills games did.

 

43 minutes ago, Doc said:

The Lancet.  LOL!

 

Not sure on the humor there?  Lancet is one of the top medical journals, has been for decades?

 

34 minutes ago, DrDawkinstein said:

Just when @SDS thought it was safe to unpin the thread! Josh and the NYTs show him otherwise!

 

Yeah well, I just put it back.  I may get shot down for it, so those who would like to see that can beat the rush and buy tickets.

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21 minutes ago, Doc Brown said:

"The study does not prove a causal link between fan attendance and Covid-19 cases, but suggests that there may be a relationship between the two."

 

Solid science there.  There's numerous other factors that could've lead to a spike in cases.


 

Without doing DNA sequencing on all of the positive samples - they can only ever prove a Suggested link.  
 

What you see is spikes in and around the NFL stadiums (many different stadiums not just an over all link) and those match the timeframes of the game. 
 

Of course there are numerous factors that could lead to surges, but the most common link between the increases that occur in certain communities around NFL stadiums and not in other unlinked communities is the gathering of the people.  
 

It is exactly like the argument about Sturgis Rally in South Dakota - numbers spiked all over the northern mid-west with an obvious root cause, but without genetic markers and testing it is only a link - not a causal relationship.

 

It makes complete sense and does not mean the league was wrong - it shows how easy it is to spread and how bringing in 5 - 10,000 people to watch the game has impacts outside of the stadium.  It is not necessarily proven the spread even occurred at the game - it was just focused with that event as the epicenter.

 

The increase could be people coming into the area and eating out, more people getting gas and shopping at the local “Wegman’s” or other store, it could be the increased gathering of local staff to handle the flow of people, there are many aspects that could lead to the increase, but the big thing that changed week to week was the fans gathering even in reduced numbers and those fans and staff coming in contact with multitudes of others around the game.  That pressure was not there when there were 0 fans and limited staff as was shown during the study.

Edited by Rochesterfan
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21 minutes ago, Doc Brown said:

"The study does not prove a causal link between fan attendance and Covid-19 cases, but suggests that there may be a relationship between the two."

 

Solid science there.  There's numerous other factors that could've lead to a spike in cases.

 

You know, this really should be a football relevant topic that we can have a discussion about, but if this is the reaction, I guess the answer is still "no".

 

Science seldom proves anything.  Scientists are a cautious bunch.  We're the ones who get asked "what color is this house painted?" and say "the two sides I can see appear to be blue".  So "suggesting a causal link" but not proving it, is about the best we can do, but it should at least be given some attention and not dismissed out of hand.

 

If you look at the actual article, they tried pretty hard to account for those other causes

https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3805754

 

 

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10 minutes ago, Freddie's Dead said:

The Lancet has zero credibility after they had to fully retract a Covid article which trashed HCQ as a treatment from a year ago.  Not buying anything The Lancet is selling.

 

Now let me understand this. 

You're talking about this, I presume:

https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/medical/lancet-retracts-major-covid-19-paper-that-raised-safety-concerns-about-malaria-drugs/ar-BB152ZkP

 

The paper was withdrawn, not because the conclusions were wrong, but because the authors became unable to independently verify the data, which was sourced by a company called 'Surgisphere':

Quote

As scrutiny grew, the authors on the paper not affiliated with Surgisphere called for an independent audit. In their statement Thursday, they said that Surgisphere was not cooperating with the independent reviewers and would not provide the data.

"As such, our reviewers were not able to conduct an independent and private peer review and therefore notified us of their withdrawal from the peer-review process," the researchers wrote.

 

Therefore, the authors did the embarrassing but scientifically ethical thing, and asked the Lancet to withdraw the paper.

The Lancet complied.

 

Yet somehow, The Lancet and the authors taking responsibility and behaving ethically, gives them "zero credibility" to you?  Seems bizarre, but You Do You.

 

Gentle reminder: try to keep this focused narrowly on football and this study, the Lancet credibility question is relevant because they are the journal publishing the study.

 

 

 

 

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13 minutes ago, Freddie's Dead said:

The Lancet has zero credibility after they had to fully retract a Covid article which trashed HCQ as a treatment from a year ago.  Not buying anything The Lancet is selling.

 

HCQ was proven to be almost wholly ineffective by numerous studies. Dexamethesone and blood thinners on the other hand proved to be quite useful.

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13 minutes ago, Freddie's Dead said:

The Lancet has zero credibility after they had to fully retract a Covid article which trashed HCQ as a treatment from a year ago.  Not buying anything The Lancet is selling.

Never heard of the Lancet, but if it’s in the NYT, it has to be true.

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3 minutes ago, Hapless Bills Fan said:

Yet somehow, The Lancet and the authors taking responsibility and behaving ethically, gives them "zero credibility" to you?  Seems bizarre, but You Do You.

 

I'm a do Me.  The Lancet has editorial responsibility to thoroughly review and vet every paper they publish.  They don't.  With that, I'm done.

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Yeah, this thread is going to be productive of topical, constructive football-related discussion.

I'm borrowing @Chandler#81's gift for predicting these things.

 

4 minutes ago, Freddie's Dead said:

I'm a do Me.  The Lancet has editorial responsibility to thoroughly review and vet every paper they publish.  They don't.  With that, I'm done.

 

As someone who has participated in peer-reviewing papers for scientific journals, the thorough review process does not involve visiting the author's labs and reviewing all of their primary data.  That's way above any reasonable expectation for a journal.  During review, you take the data at face value, and ensure that the data support the conclusions and that references are cited appropriately and correctly. 

 

It's the author's responsibility to ensure the integrity of their own data - it's always been that way, and when they could not, the authors acted correctly in withdrawing the paper.

 

The Lancet was, and remains, one of the premier journals in the medical field.

 

6 minutes ago, Rico said:

Never heard of the Lancet, but if it’s in the NYT, it has to be true.

 

Don't have to believe NYT, link to Lancet paper included above.

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3 minutes ago, Paup 1995MVP said:

Alabama is planning on full capacity at Bryant-Denny Stadium this coming season.  As is probably the rest of the SEC and Sun Belt Conferences teams.  

 

Maybe science is different down South.  LOL

 

Ha! Well... zero amount of science when into those decisions. That was all money and politics.

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