With COVID-19 cases spiking nationwide, there is significant concern from infectious disease experts and health officials that December and January could be very difficult months as more people become infected. This is particularly evident in Tennessee, where the White House Coronavirus Task Force has placed the Volunteer State in the “red zone” along with 81 of its counties for infection and positivity rates.
Officials have warned that the spread of the virus will remain unyielding with a significant impact on the healthcare system, so if you have plans this holiday season, here are some things you and your family can do to mitigate your risk and stay safe:
- Avoid Flights and Other Public Modes of Transportation. Driving is currently the safest way to prevent exposure to COVID while traveling. However, it still is not risk-free. Gas stations, public restrooms and roadside diners all carry potential risks. Experts advise to make travel plans close to home and if possible, avoid airports and other public transportation settings.
- Keep Family Gatherings to a Minimum. Limit the number of attendees as much as possible to allow people from different households to remain at least 6 feet apart at all times. Guests should avoid direct contact, including handshakes and hugs, with others not from their household.
- Encourage Guests and Family Members to Practice Good Hygiene. Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Wear a Mask. At gatherings that include persons of different households, everyone should always wear a mask that covers both the mouth and nose, except when eating or drinking. It is also important to stay at least 6 feet away from people who are not in your household at all times.
While the above suggestions are very good ways to limit virus exposure, they still carry risks. Be sure to review the full list of CDC recommendations for protecting yourself and others during the holidays.
Additionally, be sure to keep updated with the latest re-openings and restrictions for the State of Tennessee. Following the advice of experts and implementing practical safety measures will result in a safer holiday season for you, your family, friends and loved ones.
Have a safe and happy holiday season.
Stillman & Friedland Attorneys