The holiday season is a favorite time of year for many people, with festive lights, the excitement and joy of Christmastime, and reflecting on the past year’s blessings as we ring in the new year. While this December will look different this year in the midst of a pandemic, it doesn’t mean that the holiday season can’t still bring enjoyment and peace. 

HSHS St. Mary’s Hospital is encouraging community members to make memories this holiday season, but to act responsibility and celebrate safely.

“Although the holidays are typically when we enjoy gathering with family and friends, we urge everyone to use alternative ways to ‘gather’ with those who don’t live in your household,” said Dr. Ryan Jennings, chief medical officer of St. Mary’s Hospital. “We have seen examples during this pandemic where there were spikes in cases following other holidays and gatherings this spring, summer and fall. If everyone takes steps to celebrate in socially distant ways, we can limit the spread of COVID-19 and keep yourself and loved ones safe while still enjoying this season.” 

St. Mary’s Hospital offers the following suggestions on sharing the spirit of the holiday season “together while apart”:

  • Host a virtual movie night and watch your favorite Christmas movies together. 
  • Share in your holiday traditions together via video like decorating a tree, opening presents or ringing in the new year. 
  • Have a video celebration. Instead of gathering for dinner in person, gather virtually using a video chat app. Then you can safely eat together and enjoy each other’s company.
  • Enjoy a special family meal item together, separately. Share the family recipe for that special item ahead of time so everyone can make it and enjoy it together virtually.

For more tips on celebrating safely this holiday season, visit cdc.gov.

Media Contact

Andrew Dilbeck


HSHS Illinois
Office: 217-464-5610
Andrew.Dilbeck@hshs.org

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