UMD doctor ranks summer activities risks from low to high as COVID-19 pandemic continues

From camping to an outing at the park or even attending a wedding, as the days get warmer many of us who have been cooped up inside will probably be eager to get out and want to do some of those things.

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But we are continuing to go through the COVID-19 pandemic even as the summer season approaches.

Medical Director, Dr. Sara Vazer with the University of Maryland spoke with FOX 5's Ayesha Khan saying that people who are seen running, walking or working out outdoors are pretty much safe as long as they are following the CDC recommended guidelines of a 6 feet distance from other people.

Vazer said, while most outdoor activities involve a low risk of a person getting sick from the virus, the danger varies greatly depending on the size of the gathering and how closely people gather.


If a person is swimming in a pool she said, he or she should be fine. Going to the beach is safe as well but noted seeing people at Virginia Beach, Va. and in Ocean City, Md., who in her medical opinion, were not being cautious.

"Some of the pictures and some of the videos have been a little scary in the sense that nobody was wearing face masks on the beaches," said Vazer.

As far as people wanting to get their hair cut, the doctor believes the risk is not terribly high if both you and your haircutter wear masks and if COVID-19 is not very prevalent in your area.

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She said to look for a salon or barbershop that has and enforces policies to protect its employees, such as wearing protective gear and sanitizing hands.

Summer, she noted is also one of the more popular wedding seasons even though most weddings have been postponed this year. But Vazer said the risk will always be there especially if the celebration is being held indoors and people are having extended face-to-face conversations.

"Try to spread out try to stay away from being so close to each other enjoy the party but maintain that social distance," Vazer said.

"That rule applies to whether it's a wedding, churches, mosques or any other religious places. It's putting yourself at a danger level and it is a higher risk of transmission when you have more than ten people.

Vazer also touched on the use of public bathrooms. She said the risk is low because it's not about catching the virus from a surface, rather, potentially from the person who was in that bathroom stall right before the next person.

Vazer also mentioned, there is a chance of a second wave of the same pandemic in addition to the next season of the flu. She went on to say that the public will have to most likely continue to wear protective gear such as masks and latex gloves for a while.


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