As the world prepared to say adios to 2020, many Lebanese people took to social media to report that they have been invited to New Year's Eve parties in private venues, ones that only welcome them if they have tested positive for COVID-19, in an attempt to defy social distancing rules set by the state!
Posting screenshots of messages they received from friends, a number of Lebanese people warned that groups of people had planned NYE celebrations by holding "safe" parties for people who have already tested positive for COVID-19, calling them "COVID positive only parties."
Efforts to curb the spread of the virus have urged the Lebanese government to impose three lockdowns throughout 2020, the latest was last November.
i was literally invited to one when i had a corona scare a couple of days ago? https://t.co/YcwqILQn8I— hadrian (@citizeninastate) December 31, 2020
According to these Instagram stories, parties for “covid-19 positive” people are an actual thing... pic.twitter.com/BkveG3GaCm— Fatima (@fatimalmahmoud) December 31, 2020
Consequently, the news was widely shared by social media users, who expressed their shock over what they considered as "the absence of social responsibility" on the part of the celebrating patients.
So far, more than 190k people have tested positive in the country while almost 1500 people have reportedly lost their lives to the pandemic. However, the Lebanese health sector has been calling on the near 7 million people in the country to adhere to social distancing and wearing face masks, saying that the health sector in the country isn't well-prepared for the crisis and can easily be overwhelmed with cases.
According to Reuters, Lebanese officials have stated that vaccine doses are not expected to arrive in the country before February 2021, which requires the country's population to commit to recommendations that aim to control infection spikes.
Knowing that parties and gatherings happened only 48 hours ago - no symptoms can be detected yet if someone got infected there, so the faster people get PCR tests the better it is for their trips as most airlines require a test done 48 to 72 before the trip.— Luna Safwan - لونا صفوان (@LunaSafwan) January 2, 2021
On the first days of 2021, Lebanese journalists also reported lengthy ques in front of COVID-19 testing centers, saying that Lebanese residents of other countries are in a rush to get negative tests results following their holidays at home; so they can get back to their countries of residency and return to work. They warned that such tests will most probably grant them negative results despite the high chances of them having caught the virus that doesn't show symptoms immediately.
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