Local health authorities urge safety measures on Halloween

Local News

HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) – With Halloween coming up this weekend, many people in the valley are preparing to celebrate.

However, health experts are still urging people to use caution this Halloween to prevent another COVID-19 spike.

Since COVID-19 hospitalizations in the valley have gone down in recent weeks, Hidalgo County Health Authority Dr. Ivan Melendez said he expects people to try to get back to normal.

“You know what happened last time, we were so optimistic and then delta showed its ugly wings, and we went from the ’40s to 600 so we are cautiously optimistic that things are getting better.” Dr. Melendez said. “It’s time to start enjoying Halloween there is no reason with the numbers that we have today cannot enjoy their holiday season, but we have to be smart about it.”

The biggest tip Dr. Melendez has for people celebrating Halloween is to not confuse Halloween masks as a way to protect themselves and others. Besides wearing surgical masks, there are also tips on staying safe for trick or treating.

“Try to do treats where the kids can pick up the treats themselves in other words you can put them outside in a basket in an area where the child can come and pick it up themselves,” Dr. Melendez said.

However as the Halloween holiday is quickly approaching, there are still concerns about another spike in COVID-19 cases.

“You know that is always the worry, we seem to go through this pattern,” said Cameron County Health Authority, Dr. James Castillo. “This cycle you know things get bad, everybody gets worried, it gets better, and we all relax, and then it happens again.”

As the FDA has given the Pizer vaccine emergency approval for children 5 to 11 years old, Dr. Castillo is hopeful more vaccination will finally put a stop to the pandemic.

“I’m just hoping that with the great vaccination rates that we have with how many people got infected with this delta variant you know during this most recent surge,” Dr. Castillo said. ” For at least the next few months I would hope that we enjoy lower rates of COVID, it has never gone to zero.”

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