Health officials: Get tested 5-7 days after Thanksgiving travel or gatherings

Holiday travelers pass through Los Angeles International Airport on Thanksgiving eve as the COVID-19 spike worsens and stay-at-home restrictions are increased on Nov. 25, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)

State and federal leaders are urging people to get tested if they didn’t follow recommendations regarding Thanksgiving celebrations.

Monday, a steady stream of people went to get COVID-19 tests in Brooklyn Park. Some said they had symptoms, but for many, it’s because of exposure.

“We thought we better all get tested and make sure we’re not going back to work or meeting with anybody until we know we have it or not,” said Ron Schultz, of Medina, Minnesota.

Schultz’s wife tested positive and a number of people said they were exposed to someone in their family.

“My sister had tested positive and I had spoken to her within the week,” said Thai Lee, of New Brighton. “Then, before I return to work, they want me to get tested.”

Dvonsia Lewis saw her cousins on Thanksgiving night, who have now all tested positive.

“Right, I was like, I was there. Do I have it? Because I can’t take chances because my mom has breast cancer for the second time,” said Lewis.

Even though MSP Airport looked comparatively quiet Sunday, nationwide it was the busiest day of air travel since mid-March, with nearly 1.2 million people taking to the skies.

If you traveled for Thanksgiving or got together in a group, the plea from public health experts is that you need a test. The middle of this week is ideal.

“For those who did gather, we obviously urge people to keep track of symptoms and get a test 5-7 days after that gathering,” said Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm.

Testing continues to climb regardless of what people did for the holiday.

“Well, we stayed with our own little, just me and the kids and the wife, stayed together, because we have a lot of relatives who have underlying conditions,” said Schultz.

For many, testing is about peace of mind.

“So, I got tested a previous time, but I thought with how things are going, I’d do it again,” said Kim James, of Brooklyn Park.