The holidays bring opportunities to celebrate special traditions and meaningful moments with the people in our lives. As you prepare for November and December holidays, including but not limited to: Día de Los Muertos; Diwali; Kwanzaa; Thanksgiving; Hanukkah; Christmas Eve/Christmas; and New Year’s Eve. When planning these Holiday Planning Safety Tips can help protect you, your family, friends, and your community from COVID-19.
As we enter fall, families are starting to plan for the upcoming holiday season, starting with Halloween. Because some of the traditional ways to celebrate this holiday do not allow for proper social distancing, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is providing the following guidance to allow for safe Halloween celebrations. Trick-or-treating events need to incorporate social distancing, masking, and proper handwashing, as well as adherence to event size limitations. For this year, it would be safest to plan special events at home, using social media and other meeting platforms to connect with family and friends.
Interim COVID-19 Music Guidance
The available evidence for COVID-19 transmission from singing or playing instruments is limited.1 The extent to which group singing or playing of wind instruments increases the risk for COVID-19 transmission remains unclear. However, measures to reduce the potential risk of transmission include organizing sessions to minimize duration of interactions and contact with contaminated objects and surfaces, maintaining physical distancing of at least 6 feet, utilizing source control measures (e.g., face coverings and masks) and optimizing ventilation. The following recommendations are based on the latest results and science around current aerosol studies and represent best practices for preventing COVID-19 transmission among faculty, students, and staff engaged in music.
Small social gatherings are places where COVID-19 can quickly spread. Also, as we start thinking ahead to special holidays and family get-togethers, here are some tips to help small social gatherings greatly reduce the propensity for spread during this time of pandemic. Small holiday gatherings must be planned with great care in order to be as safe as possible. Here are some crucial safety tips to help reduce risk of infection:
Guidance for Preventing Spread of COVID-19 in Election Polling Locations
Public Act 101-0642 Section 2B-35(a) requires election authorities to comply with early voting and election day safety and health practices established in written guidance by the Illinois Department of Public Health.
This guidance provides a framework for safe operations of election polling locations during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Community settings (congregate settings) are mostly non-health care settings visited by the general public. Examples include election polling locations, households, daycares, and businesses.
Cleaning is the removal of dirt and germs from surfaces. Cleaning alone does not kill germs, but it does decrease the number of germs and spread of infection.
Guidance for Evaluating a Child’s Medical Tolerance for use of Face Coverings in Schools
As schools consider whether and how to safely re-open during the COVID-19 pandemic, school physicals are an opportunity to assess whether a student is able to medically tolerate the use of a face covering. There are currently many questions regarding the criteria used by pediatric providers to determine whether a child is able to medically tolerate the use of a face covering. In reviewing recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, the American Lung Association, and the American Academy of Pediatrics, pediatric providers may determine a child is medically unable to tolerate a face covering for the following main reasons:
Federal and Illinois law require employers to maintain a safe and healthy workplace. As we enter Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois plan and more Illinoisans return to work, employers and employees are navigating difficult questions about how to maintain a safe and healthy workplace during the COVID-19 pandemic. COVID-19 also has raised other employment-related questions involving issues like pay and benefits, leave, and eligibility for unemployment insurance.
This guidance is intended to help both employers and employees educate themselves about minimum required workplace safety requirements, best practices to promote a safe and well-functioning workplace during the COVID-19 pandemic, and to answer some frequently asked questions about COVID-19 and the workplace.
On March 9, Governor Pritzker declared all counties in Illinois a disaster area in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Executive Order 2020-10 called for the suspension of all licensed day care centers, day care homes, and group day care homes in order to protect the health and safety of children and staff. On March 20, 2020, the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) began issuing Emergency Day Care (EDC) Licenses to ensure licensed child care was available to children and families of essential workers, with an emphasis on those in health care, public health, human services, law enforcement, public safety, and first responder fields. On May 29, 2020, the Governor announced Restore Illinois, a comprehensive phased plan to safely reopen the State’s economy, get people back to work, and ease social restrictions. Child care is a critical component of getting Illinois back to work.