Is trick-or-treating safe in 2021? A pediatrician answers

NEW YORK, NY: Children receive treats by candy chutes while trick-or-treating for Halloween in Woodlawn Heights on October 31, 2020, in New York City.  (Photo by David Dee Delgado/Getty Images)

Children can trick-or-treat safely this year with some precautions against COVID-19, according to medical experts.

One such local expert — and a father of four — is Dr. Gary Kirkilas, a general pediatrician at Phoenix Children’s Hospital Clinical and a clinical assistant professor of child health at the University of Arizona College of Medicine — Phoenix.

Kirkilas told The Arizona Republic that each family will have to assess their safety, depending on their vaccination status, underlying medical conditions and risk assessment. Though COVID-19 transmission is still high in Maricopa County and across most of Arizona, he believes most Arizonans can plan to trick-or-treat on Sunday, Oct. 31.

“As long as you’re outdoors and you’re masking, I think you can trick or treat safely,” he said.

Kirkilas answered questions about safety considerations for children in different age groups, best practices for handing out candy and why children should get their COVID-19 vaccine.

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