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Journal Articles Current tropical medicine reports Year : 2020

Hajj and Umrah Mass Gatherings and COVID-19 Infection


Purpose of Review We discuss the risk of COVID-19 in religious mass gathering events including Hajj and Umrah pilgrimages. Recent Findings The risk of transmission of respiratory viruses including COVID-19 is particularly high due to the overcrowding conditions at the Hajj and Umrah. The profile of the Hajj pilgrims who tend to be older and with multiple comorbidities corresponds to that of individuals at risk for severe COVID-19. In order to avoid a COVID-19 outbreak with potential spreading to many countries through returning pilgrims, Saudi Arabia suspended the Umrah, and access to the 2020 Hajj was very limited. A clear relation between early suspension of religious mass gatherings and lower occurrence of COVID-19 transmission in countries that took such measures promptly was noticed. There are lessons to national and international health organizations for other mass gatherings in the context of the pandemic.

Dates and versions

hal-03164924 , version 1 (10-03-2021)



Van-Thuan Hoang, Philippe Gautret, Ziad A. Memish, Jaffar A. Al-Tawfiq. Hajj and Umrah Mass Gatherings and COVID-19 Infection. Current tropical medicine reports, 2020, 7 (4), pp.133-140. ⟨10.1007/s40475-020-00218-x⟩. ⟨hal-03164924⟩


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