How likely are you to contract coronavirus in Tampa Bay crowds?

By The Numbers

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — How great is your risk of contracting COVID-19 in a crowd in the Tampa Bay area? As most businesses in the state reopen and coronavirus cases continue to surge in Florida, that’s the question many want to know.

Scientists in Georgia now have a database to assess the risk of contracting coronavirus after attending events of various sizes. The database assesses the risk for every county in the country.

Using public health data, researchers with the Applied Bioinformatics Laboratory at the Georgia Institute of Technology developed the interactive map to account for widespread gaps in U.S. testing for the coronavirus. The virus can easily spread between people who display mild or no symptoms of illness.

Risk assessments change daily, but WFLA.com took a look at the risk of contracting coronavirus in the Tampa Bay area counties as of Tuesday, July 28.

  • Citrus
    • Risk with 10 people: 30%
    • Risk with 50 people: 83%
  • Hardee
    • Risk with 10 people: 50%
    • Risk with 50 people: 97%
  • Hernando
    • Risk with 10 people: 26%
    • Risk with 50 people: 78%
  • Highlands
    • Risk with 10 people: 39%
    • Risk with 50 people: 92%
  • Hillsborough
    • Risk with 10 people: 41%
    • Risk with 50 people: 93%
  • Manatee
    • Risk with 10 people: 50%
    • Risk with 50 people: 97%
  • Pasco
    • Risk with 10 people: 29%
    • Risk with 50 people: 82%
  • Pinellas
    • Risk with 10 people: 34%
    • Risk with 50 people: 87%
  • Polk
    • Risk with 10 people: 44%
    • Risk with 50 people: 94%
  • Sarasota
    • Risk with 10 people:37%
    • Risk with 50 people: 90%

At events with either 10 or 50 people, Manatee County residents have the highest risk of contracting COVID-19. But in assessing the risk of events with at least 100 people – such as a concert or wedding – the database found residents of most Tampa Bay area counties had at least a 99% risk of becoming ill with coronavirus.

“The issue of understanding risks associated with gatherings is even more relevant as many kinds of businesses, including sports and universities, are considering how to reopen safely,” said Professor Joshua Weitz from the School of Biological Sciences.

Weitz is the founding director of Georgia Tech’s Ph.D. in Quantitative Biosciences program.

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