The Year of the Ox is upon us! In these unprecedented times, everyone celebrating the Chinese New Year must adjust how we do so. As you read this hopefully you find some useful information of things to keep in mind as you celebrate this February.
If you are hosting or attending a gathering of people (though not recommended) it is absolutely fine to ask questions of friends and family about the details of such a celebration. It is your responsibility to yourself as well as your loved ones to maintain safety above all else even if it means deciding to celebrate from a distance.
Everyone who chooses to celebrate in a group with friends and family needs to be aware of a few things.
- Where are guests coming from? If people are traveling this is particularly important. Do some research and see if the city they are coming from has an especially high transmission rate. If they are spending time in airports, how busy they are, and for how long might they be exposed.
- Have the people attending been tested? Traveling in any form should only be done after receiving a negative Covid-19 test result. An important thing to be aware of is the requirements of interstate travel. Some states such as Hawaii require 10 days of self-quarantine after arriving unless proof of a negative result is provided. All Urgent Care Hawaii facilities offer Covid-19 tests so give your friends and family peace of mind by getting tested. Call 808.456.CARE (2273)
- Is there anyone attending who is at high risk from infection? It is important to be aware of the risks of celebrating together. Those higher in age as well as those with chronic illnesses and compromised immune systems should highly consider not attending. If you are regularly close to someone with increased risk you may want to consider not attending as well.
It is not disrespectful to ask these questions and have an awareness of them. Having an awareness and remaining conscious of the people you will come into contact with is the minimum you can do to keep the ones you love safe.
When it comes to the health of you and those closest to you it is always better to be safe than sorry. It never hurts to be a little extra cautious and here are some things you can do.
- Be Outdoors: Spending most of your time outside when possible decreases the chances of transmission. Having your reunion dinner outside can be fun and beautiful as you watch a fireworks display.
- Stay Distanced: Stay six feet apart from people. Nothing slows the spread of a virus, like keeping your distance from people.
- Wear a Mask: Wearing masks has been shown to be beneficial as long as they are properly worn. This is especially useful if people are within six feet of each other.
- Supplies: It is extremely necessary to have the necessary supplies when preparing to celebrate with people. Hand sanitizer, Soap, Face shields, Masks, and Disposable plates/utensils are all things that help minimize contact as well as an infection.
- Food etiquette is especially important during a pandemic. Designate a single person to serve food who has been tested and is wearing personal protective equipment. Consider not offering finger foods, dips, or self-serving sides.
Unfortunately, you may find that meeting with people in person to celebrate the Chinese New Year is simply just not safe. There comes a point when you may have to decide to cancel plans. When this happens the best thing to do is go with plan b. A great way to continue to celebrate is virtually. Virtual calls with your friends and family allow you to spend time with loved ones while keeping them and yourself safe. You can still have all the same traditions and celebrations from the comfort of your home.