Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker and state health officials are encouraging individuals who traveled for the Thanksgiving holiday to get tested for coronavirus, even if they are not experiencing any symptoms of the virus.
During his daily coronavirus press briefing on Tuesday, Pritzker said that the Illinois Department of Public Health is encouraging residents who traveled for the holiday to get tested for the virus between five and seven days after their return to the state.
“If you didn’t socially distance at Thanksgiving and spent time with people who are not in your own family bubble, you may feel fine now – but you could nevertheless be passing COVID-19 onto others without knowing it,” he said.”
He says that anyone experiencing symptoms of the virus should get tested immediately.
“These next few weeks are a time to stay home as much as possible,” Pritzker said. “Assume you were exposed, and assume more of your coworkers or friends were exposed than ever before, and act like it.”
Health officials at the state and federal level had warned residents not to travel for the holiday, saying that even small gatherings had the potential to cause significant spread of the coronavirus amid a surge in cases across the nation.
That recommendation came as hospitalizations spiked in numerous states, including Illinois, and health officials are concerned that the impact of Thanksgiving travel could begin to show in the coming days and weeks.
As a result, Pritzker is encouraging those residents who did travel for the holiday to be extra cautious in the days and weeks ahead, saying that anyone who is able to stay home should.
“For anyone who traveled or gathered with family and friends for the Thanksgiving holiday, monitor yourself for symptoms and, if you have any, stay home,” he said. “Even if you think you are having allergies or experiencing what feels like a mild cold, IDPH recommends that you stay home as much as possible and avoid close contact with other people – that includes those in your household.”