A party for fans to celebrate the release of a Taylor Swift album was connected with more than 97 positive COVID-19 cases, according to Sydney, Australia health officials. Countries around the world are wrestling with an influx of cases related to the Omicron variant and holiday season.
Partygoers attended the Swift-themed party December 10 to celebrate the release of her re-recorded album "Red." The collection of songs originally debuted in 2012, but Swift has beganher masters after manager and executive Scooter Braun's company, Ithaca Holdings, acquired Swift's old label, Big Machine. "Red" is her second re-recorded release.
The "On Repeat: Taylor Swift Red Party" had more than 600 guests at Sydney's Metro Theatre, according to the New South Wales Ministry of Health, but officials have only been able to contact those who checked in on-site using a QR code.
The New South Wales Ministry of Health said some of the cases may be the Omicron variant but have not confirmed a number. They are continuing to investigate the event but are warning those who attended the party after 9 p.m. to get tested and self isolate for at least seven days.
"NSW Health is reminding everyone of the importance of maintaining COVID-safe practices as transmission is occurring at social events during the festive period," the Ministry of Health said in a statement Thursday. "Everyone should remain vigilant when celebrating with family, friends and colleagues and should not attend any social functions if they have any symptoms."
In an effort to keep cases down, Australia residents can face penalties for failing to comply with "isolation, testing and quarantine requirements." Private individuals could be fined up to $5,000, with $10,000 for corporations.
More than 3,800 new daily positive cases were recorded Thursday in Australia, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. Only 185 cases of the Omicron variant have been detected, but health officials are encouraging residents to continue regular testing during the holiday season.
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