Staying Safe This Holiday Season

Interview with Infection Preventionist Susan Haden

Robert Brauchle from HII Corporate Communications spoke with Susan Haden, an Infection Preventionist at Riverside Health System’s Walter Reed Hospital, in Gloucester, Va., about how to keep yourself and your family safe this holiday season.

Read the transcript

Holiday Safety

A COVID-19 Survivor's Story: Ashley Cowan

Watch this Focus NNS breakout to learn more about Ashley’s experience and the importance of continued vigilance as we approach the upcoming holiday season.

CDC Guidelines

Get more guidelines from the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention

Making The Holidays Safer

The CDC is providing guidance on how to enjoy the holiday season while still remaining safe from COVID-19. While celebrating with people in your own household is safest, take these extra precautions if you plan to spend time with people outside your household.

While you’re around other people:

  • Wear a mask: Make sure it has two or more layers, fits over your nose and mouth and is snug against the sides of your face.
  • Stay socially distant: Remember to stay at least 6 feet away from others who do not live with you.
  • Practice good personal hygiene: Wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds, and keep hand sanitizer with you when you are unable to wash your hands.

Graphic showing people sitting around a campfire

When you’re around food:

  • Bring your own food, drinks, plates, cups, and utensils to holiday gatherings.
  • While eating and drinking, store your mask nearby, and put it back on as soon as you’re done.
  • Avoid going in and out of the areas where food is being prepared or handled.
  • Use single-use options, such as salad dressing and condiment packets, and disposable items such as food containers, plates and utensils.
  • If sharing food, have one person serve food and use single-use options, such as plastic utensils.

Options for holiday gatherings:

  • Consider having your holiday event and/or meal outside.
  • If possible, limit the number of guests at your event.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and items between use.
  • If celebrating indoors, make sure to open windows.
  • Have guests bring their own food and drink.

Traveling increases your chance of getting and spreading COVID-19, but if you do travel:

  • Check travel restrictions before you go.
  • Get your flu shot before you travel.
  • Always wear a mask in public settings and on public transportation.
  • Stay at least 6 feet apart from anyone who is not in your household.
  • Wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your mask, eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Bring extra supplies, such as masks and hand sanitizer.

Consider safer holiday ideas, such as:

  • Hosting a virtual meal. Or prepare a meal and drop it off for a loved one.
  • Shopping online or using curbside pickup services rather than shopping in the store.