How to stay Covid-safe indoors at Christmas now that families are allowed to meet up

0
19



While the news that three households will be able to meet up over Christmas has been welcomed there are lots of warnings that people need to be “careful and cautious”.

There are concerns that the virus will thrive in an environment where families are all meeting together indoors over the festive season, and there are rules that people are being urged to follow.

Wales’ First Minister Mark Drakeford said people have to approach Christmas “in a way that continues to be cautious and careful” and consider the risks posed to themselves and others.

What do you think of the proposals for celebrating Christmas during the pandemic?

“Provided people are willing to use the five days in that way then we will have been able to offer a relaxation that doesn’t lead to an exponential rise in risk,” Mr Drakeford told the BBC.

“I know there will be many families in Wales who will choose not to use any of these freedoms because they will think that this is not the year to put themselves and others at risk.

“But for people who do want to meet others at Christmas, please think carefully, use it responsibly, and then we will, all of us, not face consequences in the New Year that could overwhelm our NHS and lead to real consequences in the lives of people who matter the most to you.”

Mr Drakeford said his own family would “use the freedoms in the most modest sort of way” and would see people for a “short period of time under very careful conditions”.

Here are some ways you can reduce the risk.

Limit the numbers

The experts are asking people to keep the number to as low as possible. The larger the group means the greater the risk.

The rules for your bubble between December 23 and 27 are:

  • you can form an exclusive ‘Christmas bubble’ composed of no more than three households
  • you can only be in one Christmas bubble
  • you cannot change your Christmas bubble
  • you can travel anywhere within the UK for the purposes of meeting your Christmas bubble

There is more chance of picking up the virus indoors than outdoors, which is why people are so concerned.

But the larger the group, the greater the risk.

A study by Sage, the government’s science advisory panel, has said that if you double the number of people getting together, you get a fourfold increase in the odds of infection.

Bring your own food, drinks and plates

That is the advice being given in America ahead of Thanksgiving on Thursday.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which is overseeing the pandemic in the US, is advising Americans who are meeting up in homes for the annual holiday to “bring your own food, drinks, plates, cups, and utensils”.

They also say people should: “Avoid going in and out of the areas where food is being prepared or handled, such as in the kitchen.

“Use single-use options, like salad dressing and condiment packets, and disposable items like food containers, plates, and utensils.”

The coronavirus can survive on surfaces, possibly for several hours, so plates and cutlery can become contaminated, which means you could be handing round the virus at the dinner table.

Keep the noise down

Another concern is that when voices are raised it can spread the virus more, especially when alcohol is involved and we let our guard down.

The louder you speak, the more the virus being released.

Research has shown that when voices are projected, people emit more tiny droplets of the kind that can carry the coronavirus.

Again, in America, the US government is advising that people do not sing or shout during any Thanksgiving get-togethers.

Limit the length of time you spend indoors together

Shorter visits are safer than staying for hours.

It is probably best to arrange a time limit before Christmas dinner and stick to it.

Researchers say an event’s duration has a big impact on the infection risk.

Keep the windows open

It might be freezing outside, but keeping your windows open when people visit can help.

This will allow new, fresh air in, replacing the stale air where the virus may be lingering.

A Sage report says infection risks can be increased by four times without proper ventilation.

So, tell your guests to put some extra layers when they are coming to visit.



Source link

قالب وردپرس

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here