Things to keep in mind before gathering for Thanksgiving during a pandemic

Local News

FILE – This Nov. 2, 2009, file photo shows a Thanksgiving turkey in Concord, N.H. Food safety experts say raw turkeys shouldn’t be rinsed, since that can spread harmful bacteria. Cooking should kill any germs. But bacteria can still spread in other ways, so washing and sanitizing hands and surfaces is still important. (AP Photo/Larry Crowe, File)

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — Health experts say you shouldn’t rely on a negative COVID-19 result if you’re planning on visiting family this Thanksgiving.

Ingham County Health Officer Linda Vail is urging you to stay home this Thanksgiving unless it’s absolutely necessary to leave.

“We have to, in absent of a vaccine, be careful so that our basic community wide spread doesn’t continue to impact these vulnerable people, older people, people of color who are dying,” Vail said.

Leading up to this holiday, we’ve seen an increase in people getting tested, along with an increase in cases, hospitalizations, and deaths.

Sparrow Laboratories Director Jim Richard said, “Hospital are filling up with patients that are severely affected to the point where many of them do end up on ventilators. Many of them die.”

If your covid-19 test comes back negative, Dr. Richard said you could still pass along the virus to others, “Even though you yourself at that point in time may be asymptomatic.”

He said nasal testing is a more effective at detecting the virus than rapid testing if you’re not showing symptoms. So instead, he recommends coming together with your loved ones virtually.

Dr. Richard said, “I think we are all thankful for our family and friends and in order to be thankful with them again next year I highly recommend staying seperate this year and just connecting with them electronically.”

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Michigan Headlines

More Michigan

StormTracker 6 Radar