HUNTINGTON, West Virginia. With COVID-19 cases at an all-time high, nationwide, the safest way to celebrate Thanksgiving this year is with your household. Gathering with multiple households increases the risk of COVID-19 spread. Consider hosting a virtual gathering with family and friends this year to share a meal and your favorite Thanksgiving recipes. Other safe activities to consider include watching football and holiday movies with your household, shopping online, and putting up your favorite holiday decorations, and sharing photos of them with your friends and family. Crowded places hold a significantly higher risk, so it is best to not participate in running events, parades, or in-person Black Friday shopping.
If you gather with members outside your household, it is important to keep it small and local. Gatherings with members who are traveling from different places pose a higher risk than gatherings with members who live in the same area. Therefore, celebrating with people from the local community is preferred. Remember to wear a mask, social distance, and wash your hands regularly, especially before eating. Potluck-style eating poses a higher risk of COVID-19 spread so be sure to consider safe serving options.
When considering whether to attend or host an event, families and friends should check the levels of COVID-19 in their own community and in the community where they plan to celebrate. To check the rate of infection locally, see the County Alert System data on the WV DHHR dashboard https://dhhr.wv.gov/COVID-19/Pages/default.aspx. To review out of state infection rate, check a reputable national resource such as the Harvard Global Health Institute data https://globalepidemics.org/key-metrics-for-covid-suppression/.
More information on celebrating the holidays safely this year can be found on our website, https://cabellhealth.org/covid19/.
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