VALDOSTA, Ga. (WALB) - The holidays may appear as a chance for some normalcy this year. But with numbers still on the rise in Lowndes County, South Health District wants to remind everyone to celebrate safely.
“We have seen an uptick in cases, it’s believed it’s from the holidays, Halloween. We do tend to see two or three weeks after a holiday, an uptick in cases and that has happened specifically in Lowndes County over the last month,” said Kristin Patten with South Health District.
As Thanksgiving nears, the South Health District reminds everyone to not let your guard. The health agency said it’s important to remember celebrations can quickly spread COVID.
“So, of course, the safest option this holiday season is going to be celebrating with those within your household,” said Patten.
Patten recommends doing virtual or video gatherings with extended family.
That way, no one is exposed to those outside their home and allows everyone to celebrate.
If you’re planning to spend Thanksgiving with those not in your home, the CDC recommends the following:
- Wear a mask.
- Social distance from those who don’t live with you.
- Wash hands and use hand sanitizer frequently.
If you are planning to attend a gathering or host one:
- Use disposable plates and utensils.
- Celebrate outdoors and in small groups.
- If it’s inside, open windows.
- Do single servings and don’t pass items around.
- Avoid going in and out of places where food is.
- Plan with guests ahead of time to safely celebrating together.
- And stay home if you are sick.
“So, it’s very important that we not be complacent. You notice as you’re walking around stores that people are not social distancing, not wearing masks as often. You hear people gathering in larger groups. We just want to make sure everyone is aware COVID-19 is very much in our communities,” said Patten.
Right now, Lowndes County has 4,891 cases.
The health district also wants to remind everyone there’s free testing available at all health departments.