Rise in Covid cases after Thanksgiving


Photo used with permission from Google Commons

A nearly empty flight, practicing social distancing and mask wearing to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

With 100,000 Covid hospitalizations in a day and a death toll of over 200,000 people, it’s clear that the pandemic is not going to get better any time soon.  However, Covid-19 restrictions have lightened since the virus originally came to the US in March. Although we aren’t under lockdown at the moment, we are reaching record cases, deaths and hospitalizations every week. We’re experiencing the worst that we’ve yet to see in this pandemic, and it’s only predicted to get worse over the holiday season. 

The Montgomery County Board of Education has delayed the earliest reopening date that public schools could reopen from Jan. 12 to Feb. 1 and the Montgomery County Council voted to suspend indoor dining in restaurants, beginning 5 p.m. on Dec. 15. Maryland Governor Larry Hogan recently ordered all restaurants and bars to close by 10 p.m..

According to WebMD, in the first week of December, Covid-19 was the leading cause of death, surpassing heart disease, which has been the leading cause of death in America since 1921. The week following Thanksgiving, new Covid cases went up 20%, compared to two weeks prior. In the following one to two months, “We’re going to have more deaths per day than we had on 9/11 or we had at Pearl Harbor,” CDC Director Robert Redfield predicted. 

Redfield also said that December through February will be the “most difficult time in the public health history of this nation.” 

Cases and deaths from Covid are, and will continue to be, the worst we have seen to date.

Experts say it’s unlikely that the US will have another lockdown, regardless of skyrocketing cases, due to political and economic reasons, Healthline reported. Lockdowns may be implemented in counties or whole states; much of California is on lockdown now.

It’s not surprising that we are now experiencing a surge as travelling and attending large gatherings are common around the holidays, and are riskier than staying within your everyday routine. There hasn’t been enough research to truly determine how safe or unsafe flying is. The research that has been done shows that airlines implementing strict mask rules, scattered seating, and good, consistent ventilation pose little risk, but these studies don’t account for interactions in airports or anyone who feels that wearing their mask below their nose is effective. Regardless of how safe planes are, picking up the virus at a destination, or bringing the virus to a destination is a huge concern, and a major factor in the surge that we are experiencing right now. No matter how many precautions are taken, travelling is 100% more unsafe than staying at home.

Senior Kat Jackson, a hostess at a local restaurant, has recently been impacted by indoor dining being closed, as her shifts have been cut dramatically, “which is hard, especially during the holidays,” Jackson said. 

She was hoping that Covid was lightening up and is upset (as is everyone) about how bad things are.

The surge of post-holiday cases and deaths is only going to get worse. Wash your hands, wear your mask, and stay inside; protect yourself and everyone around you.