Thinking about holiday get togethers this year? Here are some COVID-19 holiday safety tips

The state of Utah wants everyone to have a great holiday season. If you are planning winter holiday activities, we have some tips and recommendations to keep you and your family safe. The more people from different households a person interacts with at a gathering, the closer the physical interaction is, and the longer the interaction lasts, the higher the risk that a person who has COVID-19 may spread it to others, whether he or she has symptoms or not.

The safest holiday gathering is with those who live in your home. If you choose to proceed with a gathering, think about how you can reduce the spread of COVID-19 to loved ones outside of your home. Some ideas include:

Planning your gathering:
• Keep it small. Limit the numbers of guests, and encourage virtual participation.
• Make sure people who are sick, people who are in isolation because they have tested positive, people who are in quarantine, or people who are awaiting test results do not attend.
• Ask guests to wear masks when they can’t be physically distanced from one another, especially when indoors.
• Prepare seating arrangements to allow for physical distancing. If possible, consider seating individual households at separate tables.
• Plan a shorter gathering.
• Maintain a guest list with contact information in case anyone needs to be notified of an exposure to a positive case within your group.

At your gathering:
• Ask guests to practice physical distancing and wear masks.
• Gather outside, if possible.
• Improve ventilation when indoors, particularly when eating (open windows, turn on circulating air, etc.).
• Wash hands frequently, and avoid touching too many surfaces.
• Have plenty of hand sanitizer available for your guests.

During meal preparation/serving:
• Everyone involved in meal preparation should wear a mask.
• Limit the number of people who are in the meal prep area.
• Avoid potluck-style meals or having guests bring food they have prepared in their own homes.
• Consider having one person serve all the food, instead of individuals serving themselves.
• Try to use disposable items.

After your gathering:
• Anyone who gets sick should isolate and get tested.
• If any guests test positive, all guests should be contacted and told to quarantine, monitor for symptoms, and get tested if they develop symptoms.

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  • gary December 8, 2020 at 3:19 pm Reply

    It is interesting that we were told that there would be a huge spike due to family gatherings on thanksgiving. Look at the figures for the past 10 days
    it appears that cases went down instead of up in Cache Valley

    • Blayne December 9, 2020 at 8:27 pm Reply

      Yep, they used the same scare tactic when the rodeo was in town. No spike. What does seem to be causing spikes is people wearing masks.

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