Cook County healthcare workers, children ask public to avoid travel, remain home for Thanksgiving 2020

Gatherings could lead to additional deaths, doctor says
CHICAGO (WLS) -- As COVID-19 cases continue to climb, some children of healthcare workers asked the public to scale back their holiday plans this year.

Beds at Illinois hospitals continue to fill up as the battle against COVID-19 continues, and healthcare workers are stretched to their limits caring for the patients fighting to recover alone. These workers repeated their pleas for help ahead of the holidays.

"Even though I am pregnant, I have been on the front lines standing here, asking you all to do your part and stay home this Thanksgiving," said Nemi, a Cook County Healthcare worker.

Children of exhausted healthcare workers are also asking people to listen.

RELATED: Thanksgiving travel: Many still heading to Chicago airports despite COVID-19 warning from CDC

"I know we all want to celebrate the holidays, but please stay home so we can stop spread of COVID, said 7-year-old Nathan who is the son of a healthcare worker.

"My holiday wish is for everyone to stay home and so everyone doesn't get the COVID and so people are healthy and safe," added Mia, 7, the daughter of an emergency nurse.

Doctors warn there is no real way to guarantee health and safety during gatherings for Thanksgiving unless it is done virtually.

"If kids can do virtual school, why can't we all do virtual Thanksgiving?" asked Anaya, daughter of a Cook County healthcare worker.

Healthcare workers warn the stakes of keeping crowds could not be higher.

"A virtual safe Thanksgiving will potentially prevent an ICU Christmas," a Cook County doctor said. "Please make no mistake that people will die because of Thanksgiving gatherings."
Copyright © 2021 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.