Be covid-safe this Memorial Day weekend
May 30, 2022
Everyone is getting covid it seems: Kamala Harris, Nancy Pelosi, and Stephen Colbert, and even the governor and lieutenant governor of Washington state where I live.
Why are so many people getting covid now, I wonder? In the Seattle area, about half of people are wearing masks – sometimes more, sometimes less.
What’s different is there aren’t any anti-covid requirements at all. People with covid are going to restaurants, movies, and shopping. They’re even going to sports stadiums where thousands of people are packed together. And they’re among those filling auditoriums for graduations.
People don’t have to show their vaccination card before eating in a restaurant. They don’t have to have a negative covid test to get on an airplane. The few restrictions we’ve had are gone.
What’s good is that many people are vaccinated and the cases of covid they’re getting are light.
However, for the elderly and other at-risk groups, the news continues to be bad; 350 people are dying every day in the United States.
As for long covid, a study released this week shows one in five people who get covid have long covid. While some recover, others struggle on.
My advice? Keep being careful as covid rates go up again. Last Memorial Day, covid was vanishing. Now, cases are five times higher.
- Wear a mask when you go inside where other people are. If you go to a restaurant or bar, keep wearing the mask when you aren’t eating or drinking. Wear an N95. Another precaution would be to eat before the event so you don’t have to take off your mask.
- Use social distancing when you’re in a store as much as possible.
- Don’t go to the gym unless people are spread out and you know the ventilation is really good.
- Skip indoor meetings if you can and ask if the meeting can be held over Zoom.
- Ask people you invite to your home to have a covid test if they’re traveled recently or have been in crowded indoors spaces with others. If you or someone in your household is high risk, ask everyone to take a covid test before they visit.
- Avoid traveling on airplanes if you can.
- Wash your hands with soap and water.
- Get vaccinated and boosted if you haven’t done it yet.
- Take a rapid home test right before get-togethers especially if there’s a senior in the group or someone that’s immune compromised. These tests measure how infectious you are at that point in time, so they should be taken as close to the gathering as possible.
In New Zealand, the government began taking covid precautions promptly, and its rate of death was much less than in the United States.
Now the few restrictions that the U.S. was willing to put in place are gone.
Good luck to us all.
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