How to handle holiday gatherings during the Covid-19 pandemic

CAPE TOWN- As the festive season draws near and families prepare for holiday gatherings there are a few aspects to consider while the Covid-19 pandemic is still very much with us. How do we go on holiday in a way that is considered safe?

South Africa is currently on level 1 of national lockdown and the regulations hold that most normal activity can resume, with precautions and health guidelines followed at all times.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers some tips for hosting or attending gatherings while protecting individuals and communities in preventing the spread of Covid-19.

  • Remind invited guests to stay home if they suspect they have been exposed to the virus in the last 14 days or are showing Covid-19 symptoms. Anyone who has had close contact with a person who has Covid-19 should also stay home and monitor their health.
  • When possible, host your gathering outdoors. If this is not feasible, make sure the room or space is well-ventilated and leave windows open.
  • Arrange tables and chairs to allow for social distancing. People from the same household can be in groups together and don’t need to be 6 feet apart – just 6 feet away from other families.
  • Make sure that there enough soap or hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol available in the restrooms.
  • Encourage guests to bring their own food and drinks.
  • Remind guests to wash their hands before serving or eating food.
  • Limit people going in and out of the areas where food is being prepared or handled, such as in the kitchen or around the grill.
  • Clean and disinfect commonly touched surfaces and any shared items between use when feasible.

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