When the clock hits midnight on December 31, 2020, many people may cheer and sigh in relief that this horrendous year has finally come to an end. Whereas it would be fortuitous if everything awful ended immediately, it is hard to say for sure that a new year will result in less cases. The top holiday in the United States, Christmas, is just around the corner.
Being cooped up in quarantine for almost a year will surely cause families and friends to be tempted to gather together. However, if we want a healthier future, safety precautions must not be neglected.
Holiday traditions that used to be shopping, going to parties, walking outside to view Christmas lights and more, will now have to be scaled down to something much smaller. To lower the risk of the pandemic lingering on to 2021, in-person gatherings are suggested to be limited to only household members, or those that currently share a housing unit. Nonetheless, if small in-person gatherings are still on your list, here are several factors to consider: your community’s levels of COVID-19, possible exposure to the virus during travel, the location and duration of the gathering, and the number of people at the event.
These are all factors that contribute to the spread of the virus, so it is crucial to be wary of them. Furthermore, people should continue practicing social distancing, frequently washing hands, and wearing a mask when going out in public. If people practice this for the rest of the month, 2021 might just be a bit brighter for all of us.
On December 8, 2020, the United Kingdom became the first country in the world to provide a Covid-19 vaccine, this is a great stepping stone for communities to return to the closest thing to normal.
Vaccines can help prevent a person from getting ill with Covid-19, as well as protect people that may be nearby. In the United States, health officials and agencies have been developing a vaccine, working with many candidates to ensure the final vaccine is the most safe and efficient. On the morning of December 14, 2020, the first Covid-19 vaccine in the United States was given in New York, commencing the American mass vaccination campaign.
It will take a while for the Covid-19 vaccine to be widely available to the general public, so it is crucial to remain cautious and follow through with practicing safety measures. Needless to say, we can have faith that 2021 will be a year of healing.
Serena Ren/ Orchard Hills Middle School 8th