Celebrating the holiday season during the COVID-19 pandemic poses a number of challenges, both at work and at home. With COVID-19 cases increasing across the nation, public health officials are seeking to raise awareness of the COVID-19 transmission risk of certain holiday activities and encourage individuals to adjust their plans toward safer choices.
The CDC has issued considerations for attending or hosting large and small gatherings, identified individuals who should avoid in-person celebrations and defined steps one should take if exposed to COVID-19 during a holiday gathering. Everyone should account for factors like community levels of COVID, exposure risks during travel, elements of any gathering and the behaviors of people who will be attending when making holiday plans. For a detailed list of suggestions and considerations, visit the CDC website.
Additionally, the CDC has categorized common holiday activities by risk level to provide alternatives that pose less risk of spreading COVID-19. For example, individuals are encouraged to consider lower-risk activities, such as having a small dinner with only people who live in your household or a virtual dinner and sharing recipes with friends and family. Moderate-risk activities include having a small outdoor dinner with family and friends who live in your community or attending a small outdoor sports event with safety precautions in place. The CDC suggests avoiding higher-risk activities like shopping in crowded stores before or after the holidays or attending large indoor gatherings with people from outside of your household. This infographic provides helpful visual reminders that can be posted for residents and staff.
During this holiday season, health care facilities are seeking ways to educate staff on mitigating their risk and reinforce important behaviors while off work so they limit potential exposure. To support facility efforts to initiate these discussions with their team, Comagine Health developed a safety pledge template to foster staff commitment to safety for themselves and the residents they care for. Facilities are encouraged use this template as is, or as a starting point to develop their own pledge.
CDC Holiday Guidance
CDC Thanksgiving Handouts