If it isn’t already underway, eventually states, cities and provinces will need to start loosening up strict quarantine guidelines and people may be wondering what activities are lower risk and who they can safely spend time with in person.
At the beginning of lockdowns in March, citizens were advised to only be in physical contact with the people living in their own homes unless they had to leave for essential work. Some of those workers self-quarantined apart to protect their families. Now, as the world gradually re-opens, individuals and families are starting to create “social bubbles”; small groups of people outside of the home who may meet in person.
The practice of creating a social bubble with perhaps one other household is being tested in New Zealand and England, with plans to introduce the concept in Scottland, according to a recent BBC News report. But it’s not a perfect system, especially if the families gathering together are large. Physical isolation, however, is taking a toll on mental health and for people who live alone, are caregivers or have been working from home, it may be time to take small steps outside quarantine.
If you are considering expanding your social bubble, it’s important to make sure that the individuals in your group are not visiting other households, which could lead to the spread of the virus. To keep your bubble safe, thoroughly wash hands when visiting and continue to stay 6 feet apart from anyone outside of your bubble. If anyone in your bubble develops the symptoms of COVID-19, everyone would need to self-isolate.
Other governments, like in Northern Ireland, are allowing groups of up to six people who do not share a household to meet outdoors while practicing social-distancing measures. Crowded indoor gatherings and the use of public transit is still not advised in the United Kingdom.
Your own health and the health of those in your bubble if someone contracts coronavirus should be taken into consideration when creating a social bubble. All the people included should be trusted to following social distancing guidelines when away from one another.
Learn more about England’s roadmap for lifting restrictions by following this link to the UK Government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy.