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Celebrating the holidays safely during a pandemic

Posted at 10:24 AM, Dec 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-11 12:24:12-05

As we head into the holiday season, experts warn now is not the time to let your guard down.

Dr. Amy Khan, Executive Medical Director for Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah says, "Have those traditions you’ve enjoyed in year’s past, just modify them so that they’re safe for everybody."

With COVID-19 case numbers at an all time high and our hospitals at or near capacity, this holiday season she says it's important to take the proper precautions. "I would encourage everyone to think about what has been important to you in terms of family traditions, a favorite kind of memory that you have and then think of ways to adapt it," says Khan.

We've all heard it - wear masks, limit social gatherings, and try to keep your distance from others. But with a COVID-19 vaccine on the horizon, now is not the time to let pandemic fatigue get to you.

Khan says, "The safest option remains to just celebrate with your household, those that live under your own roof."

Unfortunately, that does not include college students who may be coming home for the holiday break. Khan says, "We’ve got to treat them as people outside our household, so while they’re visiting really continue to be mindful of making sure we’re handwashing and staying physically distant. Really, it’s an important piece to being able to have those loved ones visit, but also make sure that they’re not bringing home infection."

Another idea that is gaining popularity is visiting with loved ones virtually. It may sound silly to some, but with the technology right at our fingertips, now is a great time to add some new virtual traditions to make memories with friends, family and neighbors.

Another idea Khan says to consider is to read together. "Have everybody take a role or read different parts of the passages. That can make a really meaningful exchange or have that sense of togetherness that is so vitally important as we get through the toughest part of this pandemic."

The holidays will undoubtedly look a lot different this year, but it's sure to be a year we won't soon forget.