As the seasons change, the holiday season often promotes holiday parties and the gathering of families. The holidays are a popular time for work parties, and the only times some families have the opportunity to gather as a whole. With COVID-19 affecting millions and millions of families this year, the risks of its spread significantly increase with large gatherings occurring in abundance. Consider the following tips and advice if planning to attend a family gathering this holiday season.
Consider the Size of the Gathering and Venue
One of the first things to consider when deciding whether to attend a holiday party or family reunion is the gathering size. The higher number of people in attendance, the higher the risks of infection. Consider whether or not the venue is large enough to social distance safely. Think about whether or not the attendees are people you come into contact with daily and how often you see them. It would be best if you based the decision regarding the safe number of attendees on the ability to eliminate or reduce close contact between everyone involved.
Consider the Behavior and Home Location of Potential Attendees
Before agreeing to attend a holiday function this year, consider the other invited attendees’ actions and the location in which they are traveling. Do the other potential guests regularly practice safe social distancing? Has anyone been sick? Is anyone traveling from a high-risk area to attend? A decision to participate in holiday gatherings this year should be based, at least in part, but the answer to these questions.
Reconsider Attending in High-Risk Areas
In most states, the presence of COVID-19 is higher than in others. In these high-risk areas, the virus seems to spread faster and to more people. If the holiday gathering is in a high-risk area, it is safest to reconsider accepting the invitation. It is best to review other options if you or someone close to you is elderly, immune-compromised, or has other underlying medical conditions that cause more vulnerability.
Practice Social Distancing/Wear a Mask
When attending any holiday event with multiple guests, it is best to practice social distancing by staying six feet apart at all times. Additionally, when not eating or drinking, it is safest to wear a mask. While a face mask may not be a surefire way to keep yourself safe, doing so helps prevent the virus’s spread if you are positive but asymptomatic. If you are attending a social event for the upcoming holidays, consider wearing a mask, and always practice safe social distancing recommendations.
Hundreds of Canadians test positive for COVID-19, and those numbers are still growing. While staying home for the holidays is the safest way to go, many people depend on this time of year for family reunions and gatherings. If gathering for the holidays, please consider the above tips and advice.