Khanh Banh, Community Health Advocate, Southland Integrated Services
The Mid-Autumn Festival is quickly approaching, providing us with an opportunity to get together and celebrate with our family and close friends. Many groups celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival with unique traditions that are specific to their family and culture, but what is the same is our love for our families and friends and the desire to keep them safe as we offer our thanks and prayers for longevity and good fortune.
In just over a week, we will be reuniting with family members near and far, attending local events, and of course, eating mooncake, which is why it is also important for us to stay vigilant and protect ourselves against COVID-19 while we celebrate. COVID-19 is still out there, and it is our responsibility to protect ourselves, our families and our community as much as possible.
The number one way to protecting ourselves from COVID-19 is to get vaccinated and boosted, which provides a layer of protection by boosting our immune system. Getting vaccinated not only lowers your chances of getting COVID-19, but it also lowers the risks of severe complications. COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective and are now available for children 6 months and older, there is no reason to wait. Children five and older can also get the booster shot, which is highly recommended.
If you are going to gather, remember to wear a mask indoors even if you are already fully vaccinated and boosted. Although masks are no longer required for most places, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) strongly recommends masking up in indoor spaces.
Finally, if you are feeling sick, stay home to avoid exposing others and take an at-home test to see if you have COVID-19, especially during the Mid-Autumn Festival when the entire family is gathered in one place. Quarantine if you have this highly transmissible virus. While it is not fun to miss out, risking the lives of your friends and family is simply not worth the risk.
I want to keep my family and community safe, which is why I am doing my part and following CDPH’s COVID-19 recommendations. I encourage you all to do the same. As we gather this holiday, remember that nothing is more valuable than good health. Please protect yourselves and your family by making sure all of you are vaccinated and boosted. If you still need to get vaccinated or boosted, getting protected is easier than ever. Visit MyTurn.ca.gov or call 833-422-4255 to schedule an appointment today. To learn more about COVID-19, visit Covid19.ca.gov.