Have fun trick-or-treating or at parties, but take steps to protect yourself and others from transmission, they recommend.
Halloween is back after a pandemic hiatus, but a group of COVID-19 researchers stress that given the health risks, trick-or-treating and adult partiers still need to be careful.
“Our recommendation is to be creatively safe,” said Cheryl Camillo, who is one of the investigators for the Coronavirus Variants Rapid Response Network. “That means having fun but taking steps to protect yourself and others from transmission.”
So for those trick-or-treating, the research group suggests that children who go door-to-door to buy candy should wear the protective masks they usually wear “and decorate their mask to make it scary or fun,” Camillo said. .
In other words, wear your pandemic mask, not a Halloween mask.
For the adults who hand out the candy, she recommends having fun but not opening the door and bagging the candy like we normally do.
“Maybe put the bag of candy on the end of a long stick and stick the stick out the door to scare people,” Camillo said. “Or put it on a table and put a speaker out there and so when someone comes to the table to pick up the candy, they freak out. What we want to avoid is a lot of face-to-face contact with people who are not in your bubble. “
The big concern is that children under the age of 12 are not vaccinated and make up a large portion of trick-or-treating.
For adult parties, the researchers believe that, ideally, people should stay in their bubble of, say, three or four couples. If it’s a larger group, maybe have the party outside, they say.
“There is definitely more risk if you are outside of your bubble,” Camillo said. “You can definitely improve your protection by wearing a mask, and definitely don’t go if you’re not feeling well.”
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