If you're going over the river and through the wood to Grandma's house today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention wants you and her to stay flu-free.
So the public health agency is asking travelers to brush up on what's fast becoming a swine-flu prevention mantra. It goes kind of like this:
Don't be a hero: stay home if you're feeling sick.
Wash your hands—a lot!
Put a lid on the coughs and sneezes with a Kleenex or your sleeve, pal.
Get vaccinated against seasonal flu and swine flu (if you're at high-risk) before the trip. A little late to do that today, but Christmas isn't far off. So get the shot (or spray) and give yourself the gift of immunity.
"We know that flu — and specifically H1N1 this year — is a big concern for people, but flu shouldn't ruin the holidays," CDC's Dr. Anne Schuchat said in statement. "By practicing a little prevention, people can enjoy their holidays and stay well at the same time." She's a Rear Admiral and an expert in infectious diseases, so you might want to pay attention.
We're wondering if a trend toward more car trips and less shoulder-rubbing air travel will help curb the spread of flu. The Automobile Association of America predicts a 6.7 percent drop in the number of people who will fly this Thanksgiving. The decrease to 2.3 million air travelers would be the latest in a long downward trend. Since 2000, air travel over Thanksgiving weekend has fallen 62 percent, according to AAA.
Meanwhile, AAA figures 38.4 million folks will travel more than 50 miles by car for Turkey Day. We'll be seeing you on I-95 in just a matter of hours, come to think of it. If you need help on that front, check out this I-95 map, which you can use to spot trouble and estimate the time your trip will take.