A Texas man died after attending a 'COVID party' because he thought coronavirus is a hoax.
According to Methodist Healthcare Chief Medical Officer Dr. Jane Appleby, the man was 30 years old at the time of his death.
Before he died, the patient told his nurse he had attended a 'COVID party' before contracting the virus.
These parties have started to emerge across the country, as people risk their health to see if coronavirus is real.
A person diagnosed with COVID-19 hosts the party, and then healthy party goers attend to see if they catch the virus.
Appleby told News 4 San Antonio:
"This is a party held by somebody diagnosed with the COVID virus. The thought is to see if the virus is real and to see if anyone gets [it]"
While these parties have been reported in Washington, Kentucky, and Alabama, some public officials are skeptical whether they are real.
But the man attended one of the parties and became critically ill with the virus.
While in the hospital, Dr. Appleby said just before he died, he looked at his nurse and said:
"I think I made a mistake, I thought this was a hoax, but it's not."
Appleby also told KSAT:
"[The patient] didn't really believe. He thought the disease was a hoax. He thought he was young, and he was invincible and wouldn't get affected by it."
Appleby pointed out this is just 'one example of potentially avoidable death in a young member of our community.'
As long as people continue to ignore the seriousness of COVID-19, members of the public are at risk.
The doctor added:
"[The virus] doesn't discriminate, and none of us are invincible. I don't want to be an alarmist… we're just trying to share some real-world examples to help our community realize this virus is very serious."
Appleby directed her comments, particularly to the younger adult demographic.
She noted that some of these patients have no idea how sick they actually are.
"People will come in initially, and they don't look really sick. But when you check their oxygen levels and their lab tests, they're really sicker than they appear."
The doctor is now urging people to 'wear masks, stay at home when you can, avoid groups of people.'
"My plea to our community and especially our young folks in the community is to take it seriously."
The United States has by far the world's highest COVID-19 caseload and number of deaths.
And Texas, Florida, and California are among numerous states experiencing a spike in coronavirus infections.