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Photo: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Researchers in Germany staged a tightly controlled concert on Saturday to see whether there's a way to bring them back safely, even in a pandemic, per the AP.

The intrigue: Roughly 1,500 people filed into an arena in Leipzig — all after testing negative for coronavirus infections and while wearing masks — for the simulation.

  • Participants wore bracelets that tracked their movements throughout the arena — which even featured a real pop act, to get the most real-life crowd response possible — so that researchers could track the aerosols they emitted and the surfaces they touched.
  • Researchers tested three scenarios, all designed to mimic the beginning of a pandemic, with three levels of social distancing.
  • Results are expected within four to six weeks.

My thought bubble: Germany has recorded roughly 9,300 deaths and is averaging under 2,000 new cases per day. The U.S. is at roughly 170,000 deaths and just under 50,000 daily cases.

  • The fastest way to safely get back to doing fun things in the presence of other people is to get the virus under control.

Go deeper

Dec 1, 2020 - Health

CDC panel: COVID vaccines should go to health workers, long-term care residents first

Hospital staff work in the COVID-19 intensive care unit in Houston. Photo: Go Nakamura via Getty

Health-care workers and nursing home residents should be at the front of the line to get coronavirus vaccines in the United States once they’re cleared and available for public use, an independent CDC panel recommended in a 13-1 emergency vote on Tuesday, per CNBC.

Why it matters: Recent developments in COVID-19 vaccines have accelerated the timeline for distribution as vaccines developed by Pfizer and Moderna undergo the federal approval process. States are preparing to begin distributing as soon as two weeks from now.

CDC to cut guidance on quarantine period for coronavirus exposure

A health care worker oversees cars as people arrive to get tested for coronavirus at a testing site in Arlington, Virginia, on Tuesday. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

The CDC will soon shorten its guidance for quarantine periods following exposure to COVID-19, AP reported Tuesday and Axios can confirm.

Why it matters: Quarantine helps prevent the spread of the coronavirus, which can occur before a person knows they're sick or if they're infected without feeling any symptoms. The current recommended period to stay home if exposed to the virus is 14 days. The CDC plans to amend this to 10 days or seven with a negative test, an official told Axios.

  • The CDC did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Dec 1, 2020 - Health

Expert: Pandemic has disrupted 80% of The Global Fund’s AIDS and HIV programs

Axios founder Mike Allen (left) and Gayle E. Smith, president and CEO, ONE Campaign. Photo: Axios

80% of The Global Fund's AIDS and HIV programs around the world have been disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic, ONE Campaign president and CEO Gayle E. Smith said on Tuesday at an Axios virtual event.

Why it matters: The pandemic has diverted resources and attention from efforts to care for patients with AIDS and HIV, malaria, and tuberculosis, as well as restricted medication delivery to regions that are the most affected, per The New York Times.