Don’t Invite COVID-19 to Your Family’s Holiday Meal
Dr. Patricia Schnabel Ruppert remind residents that the Governor’s Orders to use social distancing to stop the spread of COVID-19 are still in effect, even during the Passover (Pesach) and Easter holidays. New York State Governor, Andrew Cuomo, requires that all non-essential gatherings, including social events such as parties, weddings, and holiday celebrations, of individuals of any size for any reason, not including household members, are canceled or postponed. “Think twice about inviting anyone to your holiday meal except the people already living in your home. Your holiday celebration might be different this year, and that’s ok,” said Dr. Ruppert.
Holiday meals create special memories, and this year’s holiday season will be memorable for its unique response to the coronavirus pandemic. If you expected to be a guest at someone else’s table, this is the time to show your love by staying home and “visiting” by phone call or video conference. If you planned to entertain guests this year, let them know you care; cancel your plans and allow everyone to stay home. If you haven’t decided what to do, the safest thing to do is stay home. Keep your family, friends, and loved ones safe by staying home and keeping 6’ away from other people.
The whole world is currently experiencing the COVID-19 pandemic, a respiratory infection that is easily transmitted from person-to-person. Symptoms can range from mild to severe and can be deadly. Symptoms can include cough, fever, shortness of breath, fatigue, sore throat, muscle aches, loss of appetite, diarrhea, or loss of smell/ taste. Response to the infection can turn deadly in older people and people with chronic illness such as heart disease, lung diseases, and diabetes. However, people of all ages can suffer severe reactions and even death from COVID-19. People of all ages can become infected and spread the disease to others before showing signs of illness.
The most effective way to prevent the spread of COVID-19, is to stay home and away from get-togethers and crowded public spaces. Any public place in Rockland is a potential site for COVID-19 exposure. If you become mildly ill, stay home, and manage your symptoms. For residents who think they have COVID-19, contact your medical provider to discuss your symptoms. Do not dial 9-1-1 unless you have an emergency.
Everyone is advised to stay home, including children and teens not in school, unless you must get food, medical supplies, or are an essential employee that must work outside the home. To further reduce interaction with others, use delivery services or curbside pickup when possible. Keep your distance by staying at least 6 feet away from other people. It is important that everyone stay home, healthy or sick. Continue to wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, cover your cough and sneeze with your elbow or a tissue, and do not touch eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands. Clean frequently touched surfaces like doorknobs, handles, remote controls, and phones.
The resources below can provide additional information for employers and employees:
- For more information and testing questions call the New York State 24-hour hotline at 1-888-364-3065.
- For emotional support call the New York State COVID-19 Emotional Support Helpline at 1-844-863-9314 from 8am-10pm, 7 days a week or call the Rockland County Department of Mental Health at 845-364-2955, M-F 9am-3pm.
- For local information and resources call 2-1-1
- Visit the county’s COVID-19 page: http://rcklnd.us/covid19