Holiday season safety

As the holiday season continues, UIC contact tracing reminds you of the following public health guidance:

  • Avoid travel — airports, bus stations, train stations, public transport, gas stations, and rest stops are all places travelers can be exposed to the virus in the air and on surfaces.
    • If you do travel, make sure to follow local and campus guidance to return.  
  • Gather virtually, as it is the only foolproof way of ensuring COVID-19 does not spread among your loved ones.
  • If you choose to gather with others:
    • Meet outside.
    • Wear masks at all times.
    • Practice social distancing of 6 feet or more. 
    • If you choose to enjoy a meal together, make sure to remain farther than 6 feet away from one another, as you will need to remove your mask to eat.
    • Do not share food, drinks, or utensils.
    • Everyone who plans to attend should limit contacts and interactions for 14 days prior to gathering to decrease the risk of bringing COVID-19 to the event.
  • Anyone at risk for severe complications should not gather with others who live outside of their household. 
  • Please remember: a negative COVID-19 test only means you were negative on the day you were tested. You can become positive and begin to infect others up to 14 days after your last exposure, so all guests staying home and self-isolating for 14 days prior to gathering is the only way to truly protect individuals at an in-person gathering. Additionally, you can experience no symptoms and still spread COVID-19 to others; approximately 40% of all cases have no symptoms, and those individuals who do develop symptoms are infectious two days prior to when their symptoms start.

Throughout the fall semester, most UIC citizens who have tested positive for COVID-19 were infected through their personal lives, either by household members or through social gatherings where the above precautions were not taken. This means that by choosing to gather in-person without the precautions listed above, individuals not only risk their health and that of their loved ones, but may also bring COVID-19 back onto campus and spread it to others.

Please help keep all of your friends, families, and our UIC community safe by staying home and celebrating virtually this year!

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