December 10, 2020
Tips to stay safe this holiday season
As students, faculty and staff prepare for winter break and the holiday season, Kansas State University is encouraging the use of some simple safety tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Preparing for the holidays
It is recommended that you shop online or use curbside pickup and delivery options when shopping for food, household items and gifts this year. If you must shop in person, be sure to wear face coverings, practice physical distancing, use hand sanitizer and wash your hands often.
Traveling increases the risk of contracting or spreading COVID-19. If you must travel, it is important to consider the following factors associated with travel or celebrating with others who live outside of your household.
- The community levels of COVID-19.
- The location and duration of the gathering.
- The number of people attending the gathering.
- The locations attendees are traveling from.
- The behaviors of attendees before and during the gathering.
Low-risk celebration options
According to the CDC, the best way to celebrate the holidays with the lowest risk of transmitting or contracting COVID-19 is to have a small gathering with people who live in your household. Other low-risk options for celebrating with others include having a virtual dinner with friends and family or preparing recipes and safely delivering them to others without coming into close contact. It is recommended to avoid large gatherings, such as sporting events, parades and movies, by watching them from home.
If you decide to host a gathering:
- Remind guests to stay home if they are sick or have been exposed to COVID-19 in the last 14 days.
- Keep a list of guests who attend for potential future contact tracing needs.
- Encourage physical distancing and wearing face coverings.
- Host your gatherings outdoors when possible. If this is not feasible, make sure the room or space is well ventilated. (For example, open a window.)
If you attend an event or gathering:
- Stay home if you are sick, if you are waiting on results of a COVID-19 test or if you may have been exposed to COVID-19.
- Prioritize attending outdoor activities over indoor ones and stay within your local area as much as possible.
- Bring a face covering and hand sanitizer.
If you plan to work over the holidays:
It is important to continue to protect yourself by practicing everyday preventive actions. In general, the more closely you interact with others and the longer that interaction lasts, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread.
- Monitor your health before attending work.
- Wear a mask and wash your hands often.
- Keep face coverings, tissues and hand sanitizer nearby at all times.
- Practice physical distancing and stay home when possible.
- Cover coughs and sneezes.
- Avoid sharing objects and equipment.
- Disinfect touched surfaces often.
It is important to remember that someone who is sick with COVID-19 can spread it for two days, or 48 hours, before they show any symptoms. Also, not everyone with COVID-19 will have symptoms, but they may still spread it to others. Anyone who has been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, has shown symptoms or has tested positive for COVID-19 should stay home and avoid in-person activities.