Title: CDC Urges Public to Get Vaccinated and Take Precautions Ahead of Thanksgiving Holiday
As the Thanksgiving holiday approaches, Dr. Mandy Cohen, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is emphasizing the importance of getting vaccinated to protect against fall viruses. In a recent press conference, Dr. Cohen warned that flu and COVID cases are expected to increase during the holiday season, urging individuals to take necessary precautions.
Dr. Cohen strongly advises everyone to get vaccinated as soon as possible, stating that it takes time for the body to build up protection. Despite the desire to move on from COVID, she reminds the public that the virus is still present and can cause severe illness and death.
The CDC anticipates that flu, COVID, and the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) will circulate simultaneously this season. Dr. Cohen stresses that vaccination levels will play a significant role in determining the severity of these illnesses.
Of particular concern is the RSV, which can be especially severe for infants and older adults. Prevention tools, such as immunization for babies and a vaccine for those aged 60 and above, can help mitigate the risk. Health experts, including CBS News medical contributor Dr. Céline Gounder, recommend consulting healthcare providers concerning the recommended vaccines.
Even fully vaccinated individuals should not let their guard down during Thanksgiving gatherings. Precautions such as staying home if sick, wearing masks in certain situations, and improving ventilation should still be taken. If the weather permits, outdoor meals are suggested as a safer alternative.
Dr. Cohen emphasizes the importance of considering personal risk and the people one will be around when making Thanksgiving plans. Taking into account factors such as vaccination status, community spread, and the health conditions of the attendees is essential to ensure a safe and enjoyable holiday.
In conclusion, with the holiday season approaching, the CDC urges individuals to get vaccinated to protect against fall viruses, such as flu and COVID. Additionally, taking precautions, even for fully vaccinated individuals, is crucial in preventing the spread of illnesses. By following these guidelines, everyone can enjoy a safer Thanksgiving celebration.