'Absolutely unacceptable’: Cooper blasts those attending ‘COVID-19 parties’

People in North Carolina are reportedly going to COVID-19 parties to purposefully expose themselves to the virus and create herd immunity.

Gov. Roy Cooper was fired up after hearing reports about the virus parties Monday at a news conference.

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“That is completely irresponsible and absolutely unacceptable,” he said.

Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Dr. Mandy K. Cohen followed up by adding, “There is no circumstance under which we want folks to actively pursue getting COVID-19.”

She explained the danger being that those who contract the disease from one of these events or parties will still run errands in the community, like going to the grocery store, and present a greater danger for people with chronic conditions.

“We are nowhere near herd immunity,” Cohen said. “A party will not help us. Please do not do that.

Dr. Jerome Williams Jr. with Novant Health said patients in Winston-Salem told doctors they want to be infected.

He told Channel 9 that’s the last thing anyone should do and said studies have shown not everyone develops antibodies once they recover from COVID-19 -- and if they do-- there’s still the unknown with the virus.

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Reports of COVID-19 parties aren’t new.

In Seattle, viewers told our sister station about a parent who sent out an invite on Nextdoor for other kids to play with her infected children.

Health officials in Washington state investigated similar reports, but couldn’t confirm whether people were going to parties to intentionally get sick.

Officials warn if you or a loved one recovers from coronavirus you could still infect others who may not be as lucky.

”If you do that, you can easily kill someone you love," Cooper said.

Doctors said they saw something similar in the in the early 70′s and 80′s with Chicken Pox. They say it wasn’t a good idea then, and its not a good idea now with COVID-19.

Damany Lewis

Damany Lewis, wsoctv.com

Damany Lewis is an anchor and reporter for Channel 9.