With Thanksgiving just around the corner, health professionals including doctors, nurses, hospital directors as well as infectious disease experts are trying hard to convince people not to hold large family gatherings.
Experts are concerned that after Thanksgiving, the coronavirus cases will skyrocket and an overwhelming amount of patients will flood into hospitals. Many hospitals are already exceeding their capacity and running out of resources. Moreover, hospitals are having trouble hiring more nurses.
The chief quality and patient safety officer at Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center predicts that the coronavirus cases are likely to increase since several people are still convinced they want to host large in-person dinners with a long guest list.
He proceeds to explain that if people go through with this, it will aggravate the public health crisis even more and will result in strict lockdowns by Christmas. Many experts set an example by canceling their own Thanksgiving plans and celebrating among their household only.
The American Hospital Association together with the American Medical Association and American Nurses Association released an open letter to the public, strongly emphasizing how important it is right now to celebrate responsibly.
The letter also reiterated the SOPs given by health professionals including wearing masks, washing hands and following social distancing rules.
It also encouraged people to think about the doctors, nurses, and other emergency workers who have been on the frontlines fighting this virus since the beginning.
According to John Hopkins University COVID tracking project, more than 11.5 million US citizens have been infected, above 76,000 have had to be hospitalized and above 250,000 have died. This has been the most challenging time of the pandemic.
According to a poll by Wexner Medical Center, fortunately, the majority of Americans have decided to change their Thanksgiving plans; however, 2 in 5 people claim they will still participate in social gatherings of above 10 people. One-third of people have also stated they will not ask people to wear masks.
An expert in health policy at Northeastern University reports that hospitals are struggling financially and facing staff shortages. Hospitals are being shut down with increased layoffs.
According to Beckers Hospital Review, seven nursing strikes have taken place across the country, one of their demands including better personal protective equipment.