Thanksgiving travel creates a time bomb with coronavirus

There are new peaks of coronavirus cases and hospital admissions, cities and states weighing another lockdown, and the flu season is upon us – but we are all looking the other way.

Why it’s important: Epidemic fatigue has begun and the nation has stopped providing timely care during the holiday season. This Thanksgiving can be devastating to public health.

Compare April’s Zoom Cedars Individual Thanksgiving dinners are planned across the country.

  • The number of Americans driving or flying this Thanksgiving will be in the tens of millions, per AAA (although travel will be lower than 2019). According to CBS, The Transportation Security Administration is expected to feature six million passengers this holiday season.
  • Canceled spring prom and graduation have been replaced with autumn birthday bashes.
  • The same cities that closed in March will now move Above Shutdown when case counts are more than double that.

Big picture: Harvard T.H. “The coming holidays are likely to be a real, serious problem in terms of transmission facilities,” says William Henaz, an associate professor of epidemiology at Chan School Public Health.

  • Student cross-country travel is also likely to be prosecuted. Of the students who go home for Thanksgiving, 49% plan to distance themselves socially but not at home, and according to a new poll from Generation Lab, 24% plan to take no action.
  • 59% of students plan to return to campus after the holidays.

Flashback: Travel and new regional coronavirus outbreaks from the fourth and labor day of July, and it was with the ability to gather comfortably outside.

  • Another warning for Americans: Canadian Thanksgiving, which took place on Oct. 11, sparked case spikes across the country.

It’s always boring to worry about people, Says Meredith Maatson, a professor of psychology at the Red-Jarjett Technical College. “As this novelty wears on, the fatigue starts to increase.”

  • On top of that, the virus competes for attention. Elections and holidays have been disruptive, he says, especially for those who have not experienced loss or dismissal. “There are people who are lucky, who have not been directly affected by the way they were forced to take notice.”
  • Selective hearings also play a role as people hear different information from their friends, their television sets and their president about what is safe and what is not.
  • “If I want to give my family a Thanksgiving, then I can go in search of colleagues and news sources and executives who confirm what I want.”

Bottom line: If Americans plan to move in with out-of-town relatives or travel hosts, they can take a number of precautions to reduce the spread, according to the CDC:

  • There is no excuse for isolating for two weeks or getting a coronavirus test, avoiding close contact and crowds with people, or wearing other masks.
  • Even if family members are comfortable flying or driving, it is impossible to advise visiting cities experiencing the current boom.
  • Ventilation is essential if living indoors is unavoidable.
  • Consider your home state travel or quarantine restrictions when returning home.