Guest Editorial by the American Medical Response
The COVID-19 pandemic has left people feeling overwhelmed and isolated, and while the holidays present an opportunity to gather together with friends and family to celebrate, American Medical Response (AMR) is encouraging Buffalo residents to reconsider their holiday plans.
“Unfortunately, cases of COVID-19 are on the rise globally, and small gatherings are a big contributor to that increase,” said Timothy Frost, regional director of AMR Western New York. “It is important that when making plans for your household, you consider how you can best keep your friends, family and community healthy and safe.”
AMR offers these tips for planning a fun and safe holiday celebration:
√ Gather virtually. In-person gatherings with family or friends from different households pose a big risk. Instead, host a Thanksgiving or Friendsgiving celebration digitally.
√ Host a household celebration. Rather than inviting guests to your home this holiday, opt to just celebrate with members of your household.
√ If you do decide to invite guests to your holiday celebration, AMR recommends taking as many precautions as possible.
√ Evaluate the risk. If you have someone living in your home who is at greater risk for contracting COVID-19, you should reconsider hosting a gathering.
√ Limit the number of attendees. By keeping your guest list small, you allow people to maintain 6 feet of social distance.
√ Opt for outdoors. If the weather permits, host your celebration outdoors and ask guests to observe social distancing and mask use guidelines.
√ Increase ventilation. If you must host guests in your home, open the windows and doors or place central air and heating systems on continuous circulation.
√ Discourage direct contact and encourage handwashing. Guests should be discouraged from shaking hands or hugging and encouraged to practice frequent handwashing or hand sanitization.
√ Skip the potluck. Encourage your guests to bring their own food and drinks for members of their household. If you do decide to serve dinner, have one person be the designated server so that multiple people are not handling serving utensils.
The more of these precautions you follow, the safer your gathering will be. However, the safest measure is always to limit your gathering to just members of your household.
AMR is committed to the health and wellbeing of the communities it serves. AMR caregivers promote safety and preparedness to help save lives and prevent both injury and disability.
American Medical Response Inc., America’s leading provider of medical transportation, provides services in 40 states and the District of Columbia. More than 28,000 AMR paramedics, EMTs, RNs and other professionals work together to transport more than 4.8 million patients nationwide each year in critical, emergency and nonemergency situations. AMR also provides fire services through Rural Metro Fire Department, www.ruralmetrofire.com. For more information about AMR, visit www.amr.net and follow American Medical Response on Facebook @AMR_Social on Twitter and Instagram.
AMR is part of the Global Medical Response family of companies. Global Medical Response Inc. is the industry-leading air, ground, specialty and residential fire services, and managed medical transportation organization. With more than 38,000 employees, GMR delivers compassionate, quality medical care, primarily in the areas of emergency and patient relocation services in the U.S. and around the world. For more information, visit www.globalmedicalresponse.com.