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Mayor Martin J. Walsh and the Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) today released guidance for the holiday season during the COVID-19 pandemic, urging residents to stay home and celebrate with people who live in their own household.

Mayor Martin J. Walsh and the Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) today released guidance for the holiday season during the COVID-19 pandemic, urging residents to stay home and celebrate with people who live in their own household. Boston is experiencing an increase in COVID-19 cases among its residents, with the citywide infection rate at 6.9 percent for the week ending on December 3, 2020, up from 4 percent for the prior week. 

Xổ số may mắn hàng tuần"The holiday season looks a lot different this year. We all want to be with the people we love and celebrate our favorite traditions, but we must remember that the coronavirus is still with us," said Mayor Walsh. "Since Thanksgiving, we've seen significant spikes in coronavirus cases and hospital admissions, both in Boston and across Massachusetts, on a daily basis. Now more than ever, we must continue to stay vigilant and follow all the precautions to keep ourselves, our families, and our communities safe." 

Health officials are asking people not to host or attend holiday parties and gatherings. Indoor parties, small or large, increase the chances of transmission of COVID-19 because of social distancing constraints. Additionally, health officials are advising against traveling this holiday season, which may increase the chances of getting or spreading the virus. Traveling to visit family may be especially dangerous for those more likely to get very ill from COVID-19, such as older adults and people with medical conditions.

"We need everyone to stay vigilant and do their part to slow the spread of this virus. Making the difficult choices to be apart this year may mean that you can spend many more years with your loved ones," said Boston Health and Human Services Chief Marty Martinez.

Residents who may have COVID-19, are not feeling well, or have been exposed to the virus should stay home and not host or participate in any in-person gatherings. Residents who are at an increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19, such as older adults or those with certain medical conditions, should also not take part in any in-person gatherings.

Because the COVID-19 pandemic has been stressful and isolating for many people, health officials recommend taking time for self care: to eat healthy foods; get plenty of sleep; find safe ways to stay active to lessen fatigue, anxiety, and sadness; stay informed but take a break from the news; connect virtually with friends and family and keep connected before, during and after the holiday season. If anyone is feeling lonely, overwhelmed or simply needs to talk, people are advised to call or text the Samaritans' 24/7 free and confidential helpline at 877-870-4673. 


Travel may increase the chance of getting and spreading COVID-19. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, airports, bus stations, train stations, public transport, gas stations, and rest stops are all places travelers can be exposed to the virus in the air and on surfaces.

Staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others. Health officials remind Boston residents that testing does not eliminate the risk, but can help make travel safer. If you must travel, take steps to protect yourself:

 in all public places, whether indoors or outdoors.
  • When eating or drinking, have a safe place to store your mask.
  • Avoid direct contact - that means hugs and handshakes - with anyone not from your household.
  • Host outdoor rather than indoor gatherings, if possible. In Boston, outdoor gatherings at private residences should be 25 people or less. Remember even when outside, people are still required by State order to wear masks when not eating or drinking.
  • Avoid holding gatherings in crowded, poorly ventilated spaces with persons who are not in your household.
  • Increase ventilation by opening windows and doors to the fullest extent (if it is safe based on the weather). Place central air and heating on continuous circulation.
  • Avoid singing or shouting, especially indoors. Keep music levels down so people don't have to shout or speak loudly to be heard.
  • If hosting an event, provide extra masks, hand sanitizer and wipes to clean surfaces. Stock bathrooms with plenty of hand soap and single-use towels.
  • Regularly clean and disinfect frequently-touched surfaces and any shared items between use.
  • Plan ahead. Ask guests to avoid contact with people outside of their own households for 14 days before the gathering.
  • Food and drinks at small holiday gatherings

    The more of these prevention measures that are put in place, the safer the gathering will be. No one measure is enough to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Again, the safest way to spend the holidays is with only the people in your current household.

     in all public places, whether indoors or outdoors.
  • Stay six feet apart from others whenever possible.
  • Avoid crowds and crowded places.
  • Bring an alcohol-based hand sanitizer and wash your hands often.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Shoppers are encouraged to consider alternative, safer options: