The holidays are coming-COVID-19 is also coming, and it will not relax at all. In the past 10 days, the country has received more than 1 million new cases, and Thursday’s hospitalization reached an all-time high of 67,096.
Experts warn that the epidemic may worsen in the coming winter, especially in areas where the country cannot control the infection. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced Thursday that the city will issue a 30-day COVID-19 work-from-home recommendation that will take effect on Monday, November 16. The mayor also asked residents to “cancel the traditional Thanksgiving plan” and stay at home as the city’s cases continue to increase.
“There will be no holidays for deaths this season. In the next three to four weeks, we will see more and more serious illnesses and deaths,” former CDC director and CEO of Resolve to Save Lives, Dr. Tom Frieden, told Yahoo News .
Frieden served as Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during the H1N1, Ebola and Zika outbreaks from 2009 to 2017. He said that the number of people infected throughout the United States is increasing, which is worrying, especially during the holiday season, when more and more people travel by plane and gather indoors.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), most viruses and other bacteria are not easily spread during flight due to the way air is circulated and filtered on the plane. However, because it is difficult to keep distance from society on crowded flights, and travelers often sit within 6 feet of others, sometimes for several hours, flying may increase the risk of contracting COVID-19.
According to data from John Hopkins University, the United States reached the highest total number of infections in a day (over 153,000) on Thursday, and also set a record seven-day average daily new infections (over 131,000). recording.
Frieden told Yahoo News that “numbers are not static.” He said that if people follow effective mitigation strategies, it is possible to reverse the situation, such as avoiding gatherings as much as possible, wearing masks when they are not in the same household with other people, and staying away from society.
Eight months later, many Americans were exhausted by these measures to control the virus. Many people look forward to celebrating the holidays with their families. But health experts say that we are at a critical juncture of the pandemic. To control this spread and avoid more deaths, sacrifices and adjustments must be made. Families must weigh the risks and benefits of holding a family gathering. Experts say these events have become an important reason for the recent surge in COVID-19 cases.
In Canada, National Thanksgiving is celebrated on October 12 this year. Some health officials said that the new surge of COVID-19 after the holiday is likely to be related to Thanksgiving celebrations and gatherings.The surge after Thanksgiving in Canada may be a warning story for us here in the U.S.
If you want to decide whether you should get along with other people outside the home, health experts say that the decision should be based on factors such as the health risks of the attendees, the degree, number and type of preventive measures taken by the guests. The number of trips required to get there, and the size and location of the holiday gathering.
The country’s largest infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said, for example, his family must make difficult and necessary decisions to celebrate from a distance. “I really want to go with my children, but my children are located in three different states across the country. In order for them to get here, all of them have to go to the airport, fly and travel with the public.” He told CBS News in an interview last month.
He added: “Because of their care for me and my age, they decided for themselves that they would not go home for Thanksgiving, even though all three of them really wanted to go home for Thanksgiving.”
To help Americans prepare for these changes to holiday plans during the pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) this week released updated guidelines for holiday celebrations. As Thanksgiving approaches, the new guide ranks many popular Thanksgiving activities according to their risk levels, emphasizing that the safest option is to celebrate virtually or just with family.
Shopping online instead of in person, watching parades or sports events at home are also activities with lower risk of spreading.
For those planning to spend Thanksgiving with someone other than their family members, the CDC recommends that these gatherings be held outdoors. Yahoo News medical writer Dr. Kavita Patel (Kavita Patel) said that if this is not possible, consider “at least opening the windows to promote the best possible air circulation.”
Encourage participants who are not part of your family to stay 6 feet away, wear a mask when not eating, and wash their hands frequently.
Regarding food and beverages, even if the CDC clearly stated that there is currently “no evidence that handling food or eating is related to the direct transmission of COVID-19,” the agency pointed out that “following food safety measures is very important to reduce the risk of diseases caused by common food-borne bacteria. .”
Some suggestions for holiday meals include avoiding carnival-themed parties, encouraging guests to bring their own food and utensils, and recommending that landlords wear masks when preparing or eating food for people outside the home.
Patel said that eating casually is also a good choice, but if it is not possible, it is recommended that a person wearing a mask provides all the food to avoid multiple people handling the food.
If you want to rest assured and reduce the chance of contracting COVID-19, Patel recommends isolation before the party. “If you are inviting people traveling from other parts of the country, or you are going to another part of the country, please consider isolating yourself, stay at home for at least 14 days, and avoid other people and places, so you can guarantee I am not infected.”
The updated CDC guidelines did not mention the specific upper limit of participants, but stated that all participants should have enough space to maintain a distance of 6 feet. Keep in mind that each state may have collection restrictions or other specific rules, so you should check and follow these restrictions.
The CDC emphasizes that travel increases people’s chances of acquiring and spreading COVID-19, but Patel says that if you plan to travel, you can reduce the risk of infection by taking as many precautions as possible. Some of these measures include avoiding the use of public toilets, avoiding touching the handles without washing hands, and wearing suitable protective masks.
Finally, Patel told Yahoo News that although the country received encouraging news about vaccines this week, people should not let their guard down.
Pfizer and Biotech announced on Monday that early data from their COVID-19 vaccine trial showed that their vaccine is very effective. However, experts warned that as key information about the vaccine has not yet been obtained, we should proceed with caution, and the Phase III study is still in progress.
Frieden also said that even after vaccination, people need to understand that the virus will appear over a period of time. “The vaccine will not bring a fairytale ending to this pandemic.” He said
“Make no mistakes. Some of these things will not be available to every American in the near future. The best thing we can do today is to continue to take mitigation measures. This means wearing a mask, which means staying away as much as possible And wash your hands.” Patel said.