The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) and Governor Kemp are encouraging Georgians to have a safe and enjoyable Labor Day weekend while following Four Things for Fall COVID-19 prevention measures. Wear a face covering in public. Stay 6 feet away from others. Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. And follow the public health guidance outlined in Governor Kemp’s Executive order.
One of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is to avoid large gatherings, even those held outdoors. People who do not know they are infected can still spread COVID-19 to others who then continue the spread by infecting their household or their community. The more people an individual interacts with at a gathering and the longer that interaction lasts, the higher the potential risk of becoming infected with COVID-19.
It is also important to remember that face coverings or masks are not a substitute for social distancing. Face coverings prevent the droplets produced by talking, coughing, or sneezing from leaving one person and infecting another. Wearing a face covering or mask is about protecting your neighbors, friends, relatives and other members of your community, especially those at high-risk. Face coverings and social distancing together provide the best protection for you and those around you.
In recent weeks, the number of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations have decreased in Georgia. By following the Four Things for Fall prevention measures, the downward trends can continue and we won’t see a surge of new infections like those that followed Memorial Day and the Fourth of July.
As a fifth measure, it is also a good time to get a flu vaccination.
“This year it is more important than ever to get a flu shot,” said Kathleen E. Toomey, M.D., M.P.H., DPH commissioner. “We want to protect people from getting the flu and prevent our health care providers and hospitals from being overburdened with flu and COVID-19 patients.”
Many DPH test sites will be open over the holiday weekend, but are operating with reduced hours. Be sure to check the website of your local health department for hours or log on to www.dph.ga.gov and click on COVID-19 Testing from more information.