After the postponement of Miami's iconic Ultra Music Festival due to concerns stemming from the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, Winter Music Conference was also cancelled in the last week. Miami Music Week (MMW) was a yearly home to both of these events and many more, but amid the cancellations, it's now at a virtual standstill.
Now, iconic Miami nightclubs LIV and STORY have decided to take measures to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus as well. Those clubs will pause all operations until further notice, dashing the hopes of many travelers who believed that some of the Miami Music Week events would still be taking place.
With the public wellbeing in mind, LIV and STORY founder and owner Dave Grutman has announced that both clubs will be postponing all upcoming events until further notice. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended limiting public social gatherings to 250 people or less, among other guidelines, and it looks like most cities in the United States are taking those recommendations seriously.
Miami-Dade county mayor Carlos Gimenez issued a press release after Florida declared a state of emergency, addressing questions about MMW. All special events permits have been suspended in Miami, and President Donald Trump's 30-day travel ban from Europe also severely impacts European DJs' abilities to travel to Miami for any MMW events that may still be taking place.
LIV and STORY chose to stay ahead of it all, opting to pause operations, though private clubs and facilities are still at the mercy of decisions from Florida governor Ron DeSantis. Containment practices for COVID-19 are reaching unprecedented levels, and many privately owned businesses are administering safe practices without waiting on official government decisions.
Since the initial reported case of the novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China in December 2019, the World Health Organization reports over 133,000 cases of COVID-19 worldwide, and nearly 5,000 confirmed deaths.
While many believe that the virus poses the greatest threat to the elderly, the real threat is the rapid spread of the virus and the implications of overloaded medical facilities putting treatment at a standstill. COVID-19's effect on healthcare systems is already apparent, with Italy's Lombardy region being a prime example as medical professionals must now make tough choices on which patients to admit into facilities that have already surpassed safe capacity.
In following CDC recommendations, the best practices to prevent the spread of COVID-19 include proper hygiene and thorough hand washing. The most important and effective practice, however, is social distancing and limiting public exposure. Data from the 1918 flu pandemic illustrates the effect social distancing can have on curbing infection rates over time. It's important to note that new CDC recommendations, along with the cancellation of so many public gatherings, have come about based on data like this.