Thanksgiving is this Thursday, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released updated recommendations on how to safely celebrate the holiday season during the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic. The CDC says the first and most critical way of protecting you and those around you against COVID-19 is to get vaccinated against the virus — including children ages 5-11, who can now get the Pfizer
Other holiday guidelines from the CDC include:
Avoiding crowded, poorly ventilated spaces.
Don’t host or attend a gathering if you are sick or have symptoms.
Get tested if you have symptoms of COVID-19, or have close contact with someone who has COVID-19.
If traveling, wear a mask on public transportation and follow international travel recommendations.
Do NOT put a mask on children younger than 2 years old.
Wear well-fitting masks over your nose and mouth if you are in public indoor settings if you are not fully vaccinated.
Last week, the CDC also recommended that anyone 18 or older get a COVID booster shot from either Pfizer or Moderna
if it has been at least six months since your last dose. “It’s a stronger recommendation,” CDC adviser Dr. Matthew Daley of Kaiser Permanente Colorado told the Associated Press. “I want to make sure we provide as much protection as we can.” See also: Biden rejects ‘fresh blood’ for Fed, says Powell brings stability the central bank needs Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the Chief Medical Advisor to the President, implored people to enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday safely in a recent TV appearance on CNN.
“Obviously if you’re not vaccinated, you’re in a situation where you are more vulnerable to get infected,” Fauci said on CNN. He went on to say that traditional Thanksgiving activities like eating big meals with family members is much safer if all of the attendees are vaccinated. “In the family setting, particularly among vaccinated people, enjoy the holiday,” Fauci continued. As Thanksgiving and other upcoming holidays draw closer, some experts fear that the gatherings and increased travel could lead to a new surge in COVID cases. It’s predicted that Thanksgiving travel will return to pre-pandemic levels as flight bookings were just 1% lower in 2021 than they were in 2019, according to data from Adobe. See also: Walt Disney World pauses sales of most annual passes — what travelers need to know The global tally for cases of COVID-19 rose above 257.6 million on Monday, and the death toll increased to about 5.15 million, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.