Report: Herpes Cases Soared Around Coachella Music Festival

A couple kiss on the second day of the Coachella Music Festival in Indio, California on April 11, 2015. AFP PHOTO / ROBYN BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images

An app which helps diagnose and treat herpes saw a jump in the number of cases of the sexually transmitted disease it treats in areas close to the famous Coachella music festival, according to a report.

Herp Alert executives reportedly told TMZ that 1,105 cases in total were reported in areas such as Indio, Palm Desert, and Coachella Valley. Los Angeles and Orange Country country also saw a sizeable uptick in case. Over the two weekends of the festival, Herp Alert received around 250 cases per daily — a new record for the app. The app maker said treats on average 12 case daily. The last time Herp Alert saw an increase in cases was during Oscars weekend 2018, where the app responded to 60 cases per day.

While the spike in cases may raise eyebrows for some, Dr. Lynn Marie Morski, the technology company’s medical director, said she isn’t surprised by the number.

“That many people, in that close quarters, for that long is going to lead to increased likelihood of anything transmittable,” Morski told the DesertSun.com.

Meanwhile, the Planned Parenthood of the Pacific Southwest, whose clinic was roughly 5 miles from the festival, said they didn’t see a”measurable increase” in herpes cases.

“They didn’t go to Coachella and get herpes,” said Planned Parenthood spokeswoman Cita Walsh. “[T]hey arrived at Coachella with herpes or other (sexually transmitted infections).”

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