Ask Arlington: Protect Your Community from COVID-19 this Holiday Season
By Office of Communication
Posted on November 20, 2020, November 20, 2020

Medical experts and public health leaders are encouraging Americans to help stop the spread of COVID-19 this holiday season. In the latest episode of Ask Arlington, Arlington Fire Chief Don Crowson, Public Health Authority Dr. Cynthia Simmons and Mayor Jeff Williams updated residents on the current situation and the need to celebrate safely with Thanksgiving quickly approaching. 

What are you seeing in Arlington's COVID-19 numbers as we move into the holiday season?

Chief Crowson: "We're at the highest caseload we've seen since July, where we were at our peak...All the data is showing we're going to go higher. We've got to do something now. It's up to you, the community out there, to do something about it...We're a few months from getting the vaccines. In the meantime, while we're waiting for the vaccine to get here, we've got to do something personally to protect ourselves, our families and protect our community." 

ICU bed capacity is now above 90% in Tarrant County. What are you seeing as a medical professional?

Dr. Simmons: "I've been in an emergency room for the last 20 years, and these times are unprecedented...I don't want to have to tell another family member, tell another citizen, they have to be put on a ventilator, to ask them if they want to be put on life support. I don't want to tell another family member they have to be separated for the holidays...Our hospitals, our nurses, our emergency rooms are becoming overrun with this virus."

Why is it so important to avoid large gatherings this Thanksgiving?

Dr. Simmons: "I'm asking everybody, please protect our community, protect our citizens, protect our healthcare resources. Follow the guidelines the CDC has given us to socially distance, to stay away, to use Zoom meetings. It's just temporary. The vaccines will come."

What other activities can families host instead of in-person gatherings?

Mayor Williams: "You can go ahead and host a virtual Thanksgiving meal with friends and family...You can also FaceTime or Skype with your grandparents. Catch your hometown Cowboys on TV and play games with people in your household. The CDC recommends we all safely prepare traditional dishes then deliver them to family and neighbors in a way that does not involve contact with others...Participate in a gratitude activity, like writing down things you're grateful for, then sharing them with friends and family. Let's stay Arlington strong."

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