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Effects of large gatherings on the COVID-19 epidemic: Evidence from professional and college sports

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  • Carlin, Patrick R.
  • Minard, Paul
  • Simon, Daniel H.
  • Wing, Coady

Abstract

We compare COVID-19 case loads and mortality across counties that hosted more versus fewer NHL hockey games, NBA basketball games, and NCAA basketball games during the early months of 2020, before any large outbreaks were identified. We find that hosting one additional NHL/NBA game in March 2020 leads to an additional 7520 cases and 658 deaths. Similarly, we find that hosting an additional NCAA Division 1 men's basketball game in March 2020 results in an additional 34 deaths. Back-of-the-envelope calculations suggest that the per-game fatality costs were 200–300 times greater than per-game spending.

Suggested Citation

  • Carlin, Patrick R. & Minard, Paul & Simon, Daniel H. & Wing, Coady, 2021. "Effects of large gatherings on the COVID-19 epidemic: Evidence from professional and college sports," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 43(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ehbiol:v:43:y:2021:i:c:s1570677x21000575
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ehb.2021.101033
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    Cited by:

    1. González-Val, Rafael & Marcén, Miriam, 2022. "Mass gathering events and the spread of infectious diseases: Evidence from the early growth phase of COVID-19," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 46(C).
    2. Dhaval Dave & Andrew Friedson & Kyutaro Matsuzawa & Drew McNichols & Connor Redpath & Joseph J. Sabia, 2021. "Risk avoidance, offsetting community effects, and COVID-19: Evidence from an indoor political rally," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 63(2), pages 133-167, October.
    3. Dhaval Dave & Drew McNichols & Joseph J. Sabia, 2022. "Political violence, risk aversion, and population health: Evidence from the US Capitol riot," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 35(4), pages 1345-1384, October.
    4. Themis Kokolakakis & Fernando Lera-Lopez & Girish Ramchandani, 2021. "Measuring the Economic Impact of COVID-19 on the UK’s Leisure and Sport during the 2020 Lockdown," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 13(24), pages 1-15, December.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Population health; Health economics; Quasi-experiments; Pandemics;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • H0 - Public Economics - - General
    • H12 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Crisis Management

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