Yale Medicine doctor talks safety when doing outdoor summer activities


NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)– With summer arriving this weekend, many families are excited to get outdoors for some of their favorite activities like hiking, camping or visiting farmer’s markets for fresh produce.

News 8 asked Dr. Jaimie Meyer, a Yale Medicine infectious disease specialist, to weigh in on how to enjoy activities and remain safe. First we asked about farmer’s markets.

“It’s important to remember as you go to farmers markets or any public space, that you’ll want to still maintain your social distancing, resist the urge to hug your best friend when you see them in person for the first time, and continue to wear your facial covering, you may want to bring your own bag and be sure to do some really good hand hygiene,” says Dr. Meyer.

One public area of concern while out are public restrooms.

“So public restrooms are kind of a hot topic for infectious disease specialists like me anyway but particularly because of the Covid pandemic because in public restrooms we not only have the ability to interact with other people outside of our household, but there’s also a lot of high touch surfaces. So if you have to use a public restroom, same thing wear your facial covering, try to maintain your distance from other people who are in there, and try not to touch the high touch surfaces, the door handles, the sink faucets,” she adds.

Backpacking and camping will require planning and preparation.

Mayer says, “Reserve a spot at a campground, because a lot of places are putting limits on capacity so you want to think ahead. Again, do everything you can to maintain social distancing from people outside of your household when you encounter them out on the trail and wearing your facial covering.”

And speaking about those from outside of your household, Dr. Meyer recommends having a transparent conversation with other groups or families you want to interact with about precautions they are taking when they are in public because they could put your household at risk. She says both groups need to be on the same page.

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