By: Alayna Soltis
In recent months, COVID cases have spiked, resulting in a total of 12 million cases just in the US. Among these months is flu season, which will also take part in the concern of if a sore throat and stuffy nose is the flu, or covid. The good news is a vaccine is close to being developed with some companies. The U.K. has even allowed BioNTech’s vaccine for emergency use. Maryland has taken certain precautions to try and lower the number of cases. With Thanksgiving close, the cases will only go up with many families traveling.
As in March, restaurants and entertainment businesses are starting to get shut down and canceled. The Maryland and Michigan football game has been canceled due to an outbreak in the Terrapins locker room. The Baltimore Ravens also announced there would be no fans at the Tennessee game on Saturday. Effective Friday, Bars and Restaurants must close by 10 pm. Some people agree with this decision and some don’t, Grace Caffrey a Junior at Glenelg High School states her opinion, “I think these restrictions are a good thing, in March they were much stricter and we had fewer cases. We have more cases now and not as many restrictions.” Also, retail businesses and religious institutions go back to 50% capacity restrictions. Enforcing these new restrictions will help stop the spread of the virus.
One of the more important closings are schools. In the recent Board of Education meetings, they discussed the reopening. They decided to remain virtual until April, after Easter, and the third quarter for the second semester including the hybrid schedule. All in-person sports conditioning for the Fall has been canceled. Many students are upset with this decision including Dylan Jock, a Senior at Glenelg High School, “My track condition was supposed to be this Monday but got canceled. It was a huge disappointment.” With the Fall sports seasons coming up many athletes were excited to get back to their sport and see their teammates again. Along with the sports conditioning, all sports will be canceled for the Fall.
The plan for the vaccine is also in the process. Two companies Pfizer and BioNTech have come out with vaccines claiming to be 95% effective. The vaccines could be available as soon as December once approved. Some difficulties in distributing the vaccine, are that certain companies have a temperature restriction, meaning they can only be stored at a certain temperature. This could be a problem making it to other countries far away. Some people are questioning the vaccine wondering if the side effects and long-term effects that we don’t yet know, will be worth it. Some think with the vaccine we are getting closer to normal, Dylan Gue a Senior at Glenelg High School states, “ The vaccine is a huge game-changer, and it's getting closer and closer every day. It’s hoped that things are changing. Not knowing the long term effects of the vaccine could be dangerous, but save many lives.
With Thanksgiving coming around the corner, many families are making the tough decision to stay home. Some states are requiring a negative COVID test, and a two-week quarantine before you can travel. Destiny Kukuselis a Senior at Glenelg High School states her opinion, “ I think the best idea is to have as small of gatherings as you can and if people are going to travel, to get tested before they go.” This year traveling families should take extra precautions when visiting. Maryland is working hard to return to the “ normal” by enforcing more restrictions and limiting activities.