Local expert weighs in on CDC’s new holiday guidance | News
SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM)– The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issuing new guidance for the upcoming holiday season while COVID-19 concerns continue to sweep the nation. Western Mass News checked in with a local expert with more on what you can expect for your family and your guests.
“I’m really glad to hear the new CDC guidelines,” said Clinton Mathias, associate professor of pharmacology and immunology at Western New England University.
New guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the upcoming holidays is vastly different than last year.
“It is going to be more relaxed than last year‘s, people can actually celebrate and spend time with their families because I know a lot of people didn’t get to do that,” said Mathias.
This year the CDC urges eligible people to get vaccinated against COVID-19, especially if you’ll be around young children and to wear masks in indoor public spaces if you’re not vaccinated or are in areas of high COVID-19 transmission.
“If you are going to have younger children around you who are unable to get vaccinated and that really becomes more of a priority and more helpful,” said Mathias.
Associate Professor of Pharmacology and Immunology for Western New England University Clinton Mathias told Western Mass News while the virus remains a concern across the nation, cases are beginning to trend downwards.
“Just over the last two weeks we’ve had a 12.5 percent decrease in the number of cases,” said Mathias.
Mathias said it’s exciting to look forward to a more normal holiday season this year after many families missed out on traditions in 2020.
“I think especially for kids last year they weren’t able to enjoy a lot of these festivities so I think it will be great,” said Mathias.
The CDC said it’s generally safer to gather outdoors than indoors and encourages people with weakened immune systems to mask up around others.