With summer coming to an end and a new Covid variant on the loose, some health experts are recommending people begin taking precautions again – starting with mask-wearing.
There is potential for a major spike in Covid cases following Labor Day weekend, when socializing will be at its peak with people going to parties, parades, and celebrations.
Patrick Gallahue of the New York City Department of Health exclusively told Daily Express US: “As cases rise, precautions become increasingly important, especially for our most vulnerable New Yorkers who are older, disabled, or have underlying health conditions.
“Staying up to date with Covid vaccines, along with other proven prevention tools – like masking, testing, and staying home when sick – continue to be our best defense against Covid and other respiratory viruses.”
CDC spokesperson Scott Pauley told Daily Express US the CDC recommends that all people are up to date on their vaccines before they travel.
Pauley said: “Anyone may choose to wear a mask in crowded or poorly ventilated indoor areas, including on public transportation and in transportation hubs at any time.”
Labor Day weekend may bring an increase in Covid cases as people flock to beaches to celebrate the end of summer with friends and family.
Mercedes Carnethon, a professor of Preventive Medicine at Northwestern University, told Daily Express US that she expects the new Covid BA.2.86 variant – dubbed ‘Pirola’ – will “spread rapidly through travel this Labor Day weekend.”
Some New Yorkers’ Labor Day plans were dampened when a few Long Island beaches closed due to rough surf and strong rip tides from hurricanes Franklin and Idalia, but those beaches seem to have reopened just in time for the holiday.