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Mass Gatherings at Work

Course Overview

Mass gathering is defined as an event characterized by a group of people coming together at a specific location for a common purpose and that has the potential to strain the host’s planning and resources. Mass gatherings usually take place as single events, but they may be a combination of multiple events at different venues. The gatherings may be public or private, planned or spontaneous, recurrent or be of varying size and duration. Mass gatherings may also include any high-visibility event that are often associated with huge participation of people. In the context of a pandemic, mass gatherings that have a high density of people in a low mobility can be associated with increased risk of disease transmission. 

An analysis that studied mass gatherings has indicated that the topmost factors associated with increased risk of disease transmission are: 

Duration of the gathering: The transmission risk increases with the duration of the gathering, especially if the concerned event is spread across multiple days. Location of the gathering: The transmission risk is higher when an event is conducted in indoor venues as compared to the outdoor venues. Compliance of precautionary measures: The transmission risk is a lot higher when preventive and precautionary measures are not applied, poorly implemented, or are not followed by attendees.

Although there is no set threshold of the number of people attending an event to qualify as a mass gathering, the risk of transmission generally grows with the number.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand mass gatherings and the associated risks.
  • Explain how you can plan mass gatherings at your workplace.
  • Understand the importance of the post-gathering phase.