Now that Idaho has been rolled back to Stage 2, what is Thanksgiving going to look like here in eastern Idaho? A local health expert tells us what to expect and what we can do to keep our families healthy.
"We fully recognize that this is a personal choice and this is a very important family holiday," says director for Southeastern Idaho Public Health Maggie Mann.
With Thanksgiving days away she, and other health experts across Idaho, encourages everyone to make good personal choices to keep the Gem State's communities safe during the pandemic.
"There are steps that you probably need to think about taking," Manns says. "One of the things that we've been talking about for a while now is that if you are going to travel, or be together with a bigger group, you need to really be limiting your activity now so that you have less opportunity to be exposed to the virus leading up into that holiday."
This means practicing safe health habits now, like wearing a mask, can help keep your family safe on Thanksgiving.
Stage 2 encourages Idahoans to keep private gatherings to 10 people or less. Doing so might help ease restrictions in coming weeks "which has the potential to impact things like Christmas, and Hanukkah and Kwanzaa," Mann explains.
On Tuesday, Idaho saw its single biggest spike in COVID-19 cases and COVID-19 deaths since the pandemic began. Mann says it's clear the virus is here and ramping up its impact.
Southeastern Idaho Public Health supports the governor's decision to move the state back to Stage 2. "We're supportive of any science-based measures that we know are going to help limit the spread of the virus, and protect the most vulnerable people among us, and protect our health care delivery capacity," Mann adds.
Mann says if you're planning on doing a small get together for Thanksgiving plan around family members who are high-risk for developing serious complications should they get COVID-19.