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COVID in Atlanta | Video of crowd at well-known Atlanta nightclub raises questions

Restaurants, bars, and clubs are seeing pushback for large gatherings after new cases of COVID-19

ATLANTA — New concerns about socializing and the coronavirus are building as we see another sharp uptick in cases across the nation.

Things are going to look different in Texas and Florida this weekend, where the governors have closed bars and banned the sale of alcohol while out respectively.

Here in Georgia, a popular nightclub, Heretic, said it will require guests to wear masks after a recent backlash online. A video posted to Facebook and Twitter drew criticism after a packed house one weekend earlier.

Some people posting they contracted COVID-19 from the event.

"Not surprising that in a large gathering, people are together, not wearing masks, in the environment we are living in now, it is not surprising that we are seeing multiple cases of COVID-19 coming out of that," said 11Alive medical expert Dr. Sujatha Reddy

The Fulton County Health Department did not respond to calls for comment, but the general manager of Heretic posted online that no one had contacted him directly about getting sick, but said they'll be requiring people to wear masks and taking their temperature before they enter this weekend.

Dr. Reddy says that may not be enough.

"We now know that many people shed the virus before they develop symptoms. So even if someone is having their temp taken, asking how they're feeling, they may not have a temperature, they may feel fine, but they could absolutely have COVID-19 and just not know it yet, so it's not surprising," she said. 

Dr. Reddy said it's difficult to stay safe in close quarters with people you don't know, no matter how many precautions you take.

"We are taking temps at our office and our employees, but we are also having people wear a mask, try to maintain that distance as much as possible," she added. "So, if you're using a temp screen as part of your process, I think it's better, but by itself, it's clearly not enough."

Governor Brian Kemp said on Friday that he is not considering a mandatory masking law in the state but is still strongly encouraging people to wear them.


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