Health

How to Celebrate the Spring Holidays Safely With Your Family

Say there are two healthy families of four. If the kids aren’t vaccinated in either household but all of the adults are, you might consider inviting people inside as long as the windows are open and everyone is wearing masks, said Dr. Asaf Bitton, a primary care physician who runs a public health research laboratory at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. If the kids in neither household are vaccinated and only one set of adults has been vaccinated, he and other experts said an outdoor gathering with masks and distancing would be safest.

You may also be wondering if your unvaccinated children can finally get a hug and kiss from their healthy, vaccinated grandma. On this question, the experts’ opinions diverged. But in general, if everyone is healthy and you’re comfortable accepting some degree of risk, a hug or kiss is probably fine.

“The likelihood that my kid transmits a virus that ends up causing severe disease in my vaccinated parents is very, very low,” Dr. Barocas said.

Similarly, he added, it’s unlikely that a vaccinated adult would transmit the virus to a child. That said, the experts advised doing what feels right to you and your family.

“I think everyone going into that visit needs to understand that we’re balancing risks and benefits,” said Dr. Adam Ratner, director of the division of pediatric infectious diseases at Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at N.Y.U. Langone. But, he added, if the grandparents are vaccinated, “I am pro hugging and kissing.”

Jennifer Rogers, 46, an attorney in Philadelphia, said her husband and two children, 8 and 11, will celebrate Easter by visiting her parents’ home for several hours. They’re planning on having an outdoor Easter egg hunt and whacking away at a coronavirus-shaped piñata. But the kids, who will be joined by Ms. Rogers’s sister and her sister’s son, will all be wearing masks. Ms. Rogers and her husband are both vaccinated, but they are planning to wear masks too, because their family will have recently returned from a Florida vacation.

“It still feels like a loss, like it’s not the same as it’s been,” said Ms. Rogers, whose family typically stays overnight at her parents’ home during the holiday.

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