'Mask Up America' campaign hoping to stop further spread of COVID-19 over the holidays

Infectious disease doctors across the nation are calling on everyone to stay home this holiday, and most importantly, wear a mask.

"This is something that we as individuals can kind of take charge and do as our part for wearing the mask," said Dr. Jasmine Marcelin, who is a board member for the Infectious Disease Society of America.

That's why the Infectious Diseases Society of America and the Ad Council are pushing the Mask Up America campaign now through the new year.

"To help advocate and remind everyone how important it is to wear masks as ways we can reduce the spread of COVID-19 throughout our communities this holiday," Dr. Marcelin explained. "I know that folks want to be able to have a good time with their friends and family, but really, the safest way to celebrate during the holiday season is going to be with folks that are within your household."

Health officials are concerned there could be another surge in early January because of large gatherings for Christmas and New Year’s Day.

"There’s always going to be a concern for afterwards having a large number of folks becoming ill from COVID-19," Dr. Marcelin added.

Surgical face masks are photographed for illustration photo during the spread of coronavirus. Krakow, Poland on April 24, 2020. The rule of covering the nose and mouth in public places with face masks, carves or handkerchiefs came into force from Apr

People are being asked to wear a mask when leaving their home, and not to have large gatherings this holiday season.

"Even though you are inside somewhere else, it’s still folks you're not constantly living with, and so the safest thing to do is wear a mask," Dr. Marcelin explained.

Because even though we are starting to see vaccines beginning to flow into communities, that does not mean we can yet breathe a sigh of relief.

"It’s really important for us to continue to remain vigilant. Masks are still going to be the important action that we can all take as individuals to help to reduce the spread of COVID-19," the doctor said.