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Preparing for a COVID Holiday Season

Posted on December 15, 2020 in Coronavirus (COVID-19)

stay safe this holiday seasonAre you suffering from “COVID-19 fatigue”? It’s been a challenging year, but it’s perhaps more important than ever to be vigilant about preventing the spread of COVID-19 leading into the 2020 holiday season. Traditional holiday gatherings with family and friends are the norm, but this year is not normal. Celebrating the holidays with people in your household is the best way to decrease the chances of getting or spreading COVID-19 or the flu. Follow these tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to make your holidays safer this season.

Everyone Can Make the Holidays Safer

Wear a mask

  • Wear a mask with two or more layers to stop the spread of COVID-19.
  • Wear the mask over your nose and mouth and secure it under your chin.
  • Make sure the mask fits snugly against the sides of your face.

Stay at least six feet away from others who do not live with you

  • Remember that some people without symptoms may be able to spread COVID-19 or flu.
  • Keeping six feet (about two arm lengths) from others is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.

Wash your hands

  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Learn how to properly wash your hands.
  • Keep hand sanitizer with you and use it when you are unable to wash your hands.
  • Use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

Attending a Gathering

If you are planning to celebrate the holidays with those outside your household, wear your mask, distance when possible, wash your hands and follow these tips for attending a gathering:

  • Bring your own food, drinks, plates, cups and utensils.
  • Wear a mask, and safely store your mask while eating and drinking.
  • Avoid going in and out of the areas where food is being prepared or handled, such as in the kitchen.
  • Use single-use options, like salad dressing and condiment packets, and disposable items like food containers, plates and utensils.

Hosting a Holiday Gathering

If you’re having guests to your home, be sure that people wear masks, distance when possible, wash their hands and follow these additional safety precautions:

  • Have a small outdoor meal with family and friends who live in your community.
  • Limit the number of guests.
  • Have conversations with guests ahead of time to set expectations for celebrating together.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and items between uses.
  • If celebrating indoors, make sure to open windows.
  • Limit the number of people in food preparation areas.
  • Have guests bring their own food and drink.
  • If sharing food, have one person serve food and use single-use options, like plastic utensils.

Holiday Travel

Travel increases your chance of getting and spreading COVID-19. Staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others. If you do travel,

  • Check travel restrictions before you go.
  • Always wear a mask in public settings and on public transportation.
  • Stay at least six feet apart from anyone who is not in your household.
  • Wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your mask, eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Bring extra supplies, such as masks and hand sanitizer.

Consider Other Holiday Activities

  • Host a virtual holiday meal with friends and family who don’t live with you
  • Watch television and play games with people in your household
  • Shop online leading up to the winter holidays, and use contactless services for purchased items, like curbside pick-up.
  • Drive around to see holiday lights with those in your household.

See more information on COVID-19 at CovenantHealth.com/Coronavirus.

This article is adapted from https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays/thanksgiving.html