Almost every major concert and festival around the globe has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. As of writing, there are more than 1.8 million cases and there’s no cure in sight. An American health expert believes larger gatherings won’t return anytime soon.

In a roundtable discussion hosted by The New York Times, bioethicist and professor of healthcare management Zeke Emanuel says “that’s a plausible possibility” for any larger gatherings to take place in 2020.

“Larger gatherings – conferences, concerts, sporting events – when people say they’re going to reschedule this conference or graduation event for October 2020, I have no idea how they think that’s a plausible possibility. I think those things will be the last to return”

Dr. Zeke Emanuel

We hope it’s not true, and only applicable to the United States of America, which is one of the worst hit countries for the coronavirus pandemic with over half a million cases.

Dr. Emanuel doesn’t anticipate it to be safe to return to concerts, sporting events and other mass public gatherings for another 18 months. He seems to know his stuff and is a special adviser to the director-general of the World Health Organization, but this is only one man’s opinion.

Read the full video conference transcript here