The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) is encouraging Wisconsinites planning or returning from spring break travels to take simple public health precautions to prevent illness against COVID-19. COVID-19 case infections are decreased and declining at this time. However, students and other travelers may still become infected or spread COVID-19 to others.
After returning home from spring break activities, it is important to get tested for COVID-19. This is especially important if you’ve been to a location with high COVID-19 Community Levels. Likewise, it is important to continue to layer prevention strategies. These steps are essential steps for staying safe, protecting the most vulnerable in our families and communities, and reducing strain on health care systems in communities across the country.
“Traveling increases your risk of being exposed to COVID-19,” said DHS Chief Medical Officer Dr. Ryan Westergaard. “People who have received their primary vaccine series and their booster dose are considered up to date and are less likely to get sick, experience severe illness, or be hospitalized due to COVID-19, compared to those who are unvaccinated.
“Your booster dose is key to making sure your COVID-19 vaccine continues to offer the best protection. Also, knowing the COVID-19 Community Level of the places you visited or plan to visit can also help you decide which prevention strategies to take, like wearing a mask or getting tested. It is important to remember that you can continue to wear a well-fitting mask or respirator at any time if it makes you or others feel safer.”
Spring Break Travel Recommendations
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and DHS recommend Wisconsinites delay their spring break travel plans if they are not up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines. Everyone age 12 and older is eligible to get a booster dose. Additionally, Wisconsinites should not travel if they:
- Have symptoms of COVID-19
- Have tested positive for COVID-19 and have not completed their isolation period
- Have recently been exposed to COVID-19 and are recommended to quarantine
- Are awaiting COVID-19 test results
For those yet to take their spring break trip, mask-wearing is still required on all forms of U.S. public transportation. Wisconsinites are responsible for knowing and complying with all airline and destination requirements. Traveling to areas with low COVID-19 Community Levels and planning outdoor or physically distanced activities can further reduce the risk of getting sick.
DHS also encourages all Wisconsinites to get tested before traveling on spring break. They also recommend getting tested and isolating if upon your return home you have developed symptoms.
Someone who is not up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines should visit the CDC website for additional travel recommendations regarding testing and quarantine. COVID-19 self-tests are available for free from the federal government. Likewise, they are available at pharmacies and retailers around Wisconsin. Tests should be packed and added to to carry-on bags.
In addition, testing is available at many sites around Wisconsin. Using the public health tools that are available to us will continue to help keep Wisconsinites safe during spring break, at home and on the road.
More COVID-19 Information
The Racine County Eye, which includes the Kenosha Lens, is committed to publishing the most current and accurate information regarding the COVID-19 pandemic in our Coronavirus section. View both the Racine County COVID-19 Dashboard and Kenosha County COVID-19 Dashboard offering real-time (updated Monday – Friday) statistical reporting for Racine and Kenosha Counties.