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Health - Public Health News

Posted on: November 1, 2021

If You’re Planning a Holiday Gathering, Plan to Limit Risk

If you’re planning on having family or friends over for the holidays, or if you’re planning to attend a gathering, take steps to limit the risk of COVID-19 transmission for yourself and the other guests. 

The first and best thing you can do is to get vaccinated (fully) before you go. The next best thing you can do is find out if everyone else at the gathering will be vaccinated too. Being open about vaccination status will help ensure a safe and enjoyable holiday gathering for everyone - regardless of vaccination status. Depending on how many unvaccinated people are in attendance, you may need to take more precautions.

Low-risk Gatherings Don’t Need Masks or Social Distancing

Gatherings are considered low risk if unvaccinated guests all come from the same, single household. A household is defined as a group of people who live together. Gatherings with unvaccinated guests from no more than one household can be held safely without the need to wear masks or socially distance.

If you or anyone else at the gathering is at high-risk for severe COVID-19 illness, the gathering should be treated as higher risk, even if everyone is fully vaccinated. See section below for steps to take to limit risk at private gatherings. 

Precautions to Take at Higher Risk Gatherings

Gatherings with unvaccinated guests from more than one household or gatherings where a guest is at high-risk for severe COVID-19 illness are considered high-risk. The following steps should be taken to limit risks at these gatherings:

  • Mask wearing - even if vaccinated 
  • Social distancing - at least six feet
  • Keep it outdoors as much as possible
  • Leave a window open in indoor locations

How to Limit Risk at Private Gatherings flow chart

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