What’s your risk of getting COVID on Thanksgiving? This calculator from Georgia Tech can help you estimate your probability
As Thanksgiving preparations begin and loved ones gather for the feast, COVID-19 remains a threat for the second year in a row.
To help people estimate their risk of being exposed to the virus, the Georgia Institute of Technology has released a calculator that uses the size and location of the event to determine the likelihood that someone present will be infected.
While Dr Anthony Fauci said on Sunday there is no reason loved ones should not gather around the table this year if they are vaccinated against the virus, there is a risk. Cases of the virus are currently on the rise in Massachusetts, with numbers rising particularly among children.
The calculator, named the COVID-19 Event Risk Assessment Planning Tool, estimates the probability (0-100%) that at least 1 COVID-positive individual will be present at an event in the county, given the size of the event, the website reads.
When opening the site, the user will find an interactive map broken down by department. On the right side there are options to adjust the event size. Then, hovering over the county, the risk of COVID and the percentage of people vaccinated in the state will appear.
For example, a 15 person event in Worcester County is labeled as a 20% risk, while a 50 person event in Hampden County is 49% risk and a 25 person event in of Suffolk is a 21% risk.
To conduct the study, Georgia Tech used data from The New York Times COVID Project, the COVID Tracking Project, census figures, and CDC vaccination rate information. This is the second year the tool has been available before Thanksgiving.
The website also offers a quiz for people to test their knowledge of the levels of risk in their community.
“You can reduce the risk of one case becoming multiple by wearing a mask, distancing and congregating outside in small groups. For vaccinated people, preventive measures can reduce the risk of breakthrough infections that spread to vulnerable people. For unvaccinated people, preventive measures before vaccination can reduce the risk of disease breakthrough, including potentially serious cases, hospitalizations and deaths,” the research wrote. “Higher vaccination levels reduce the risk that exposure to COVID-19 will lead to severe disease and subsequent transmission.”
As another precaution, CNN released four questions to ask loved ones this Thanksgiving to keep safe. Questions include:
- Have you been vaccinated?
- Have you been tested?
- Should we open a window?
- Is there anyone at serious risk who needs me to mask up?
- With high vaccination rates, Massachusetts residents should take advantage of Thanksgiving celebrations, says Governor Charlie Baker
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