As the number of people testing positive for COVID-19 continues to climb, Dr. Theresa Tam has issued a statement about celebrating Thanksgiving in Canada this year.\nAs the country’s total number of COVID-19 cases surpassed 165,000, Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Tam admitted “the carefree planning” we had last Thanksgiving is not going to happen this year.\nInstead, she urged Canadians to do some “serious planning” ahead of the holiday next week, to ensure that “there are no viruses invited or passed around at our gatherings.”\nThe top doctor’s advice includes using “an abundance of personal protections,” which could mean celebrating virtually, meeting outdoors or only gathering with people from our social bubbles.\nEditor's Choice: Canadians Have Now Made Over 830,000 CERB & CESB Repayments To The CRA\n\n#Thanksgiving planning? Think about ways you can protect loved ones while finding creative way to connect with safe #PhysicalDistancing apart from anyone outside your existing, trusted & protected #ContactBubble.— Dr. Theresa Tam (@CPHO_Canada) October 4, 2020\n\nWhat are the rules for Thanksgiving in Canada?\nWhen it comes to what is and isn’t allowed on October 12, a lot depends on where you live.\nEach region’s day-to-day COVID-19 restrictions will still apply, regardless of the holiday.\nIn Ontario, for example, the indoor gathering limit is 10 people. This same limit will apply on Thanksgiving.\nIf you intend to celebrate with people who are outside of your “small, consistent and trusted contacts bubble” you should remain two metres apart at all times, said Dr. Tam.\n“Remember, too close is too close, even if you are outdoors,” she added.\nAdditionally, the top doctor urged Canadians to avoid sharing food or objects with others during the holiday. \n“Bring-Your-Own is safer,” she said, “Do share friendships, experiences and the great Canadian outdoors – together apart!”\n\n View this post on Instagram Vaccines save lives. That’s why we announced that we’ve signed an agreement with another leading drug company, AstraZeneca, to reserve doses of their vaccine candidate - we’ve now reserved doses of potential vaccines from six leading drug companies. We also announced that we’re working with our partners around the world to procure doses for people both here at home and in low- and middle-income countries. None of us are safe until all of us are safe, and protecting your health remains our top priority. 🇨🇦 Les vaccins sauvent des vies. Voilà pourquoi nous avons annoncé la conclusion d’un accord avec une autre grande société pharmaceutique, AstraZeneca, afin de réserver des doses de son candidat-vaccin. Nous avons maintenant réservé des doses de vaccins potentiels de six grandes sociétés pharmaceutiques. Nous avons aussi annoncé que nous travaillons avec nos partenaires du monde entier pour procurer des doses aux gens d’ici et de pays à faible et moyen revenu. Personne ne sera en sécurité tant que tout le monde ne sera pas en sécurité, et votre protection demeure notre priorité absolue. A post shared by Justin Trudeau (@justinpjtrudeau) on Sep 25, 2020 at 12:54pm PDT\n\nWho can I invite to my house for Thanksgiving?\nWhile there’s no specific rules in place regarding exactly who you can invite to your home for Thanksgiving, health officials have given some pretty clear advice.\nIn Ottawa, the city’s Medical Officer of Health has advised locals to invite no guests and only celebrate with their household.\nDr. Theresa Tam is also recommending virtual connections wherever possible, and said that in-person indoor gatherings are safest if “small and select.”\nIf you must meet with people outside of your “close contacts bubble,” Dr. Tam recommends gathering outdoors and practicing physical distancing at all times.\n"An outdoor safe distancing meet-up with others ... might involve setting up in an open space where each contact bubble is no closer than the length of a picnic table apart," she suggested.\n\n View this post on Instagram Thanksgiving Cookies 🍪🦃🍂 Thank you @densukewatermelon for these incredible photos! . Set up • @valeoevents Photographer • @densukewatermelon . . . #bakedgoods #cookies #cookiesofinstagram #cookielife #cookiegram #localtoronto #shoplocal #shoplocaltoronto #torontolocal #torontolocalbusiness #thanksgivingtreats #thanksgivingtoronto #thanksgivingbakedgoods #bakedgoods #thanksgivingbakedgoods #thanksgivingcanada A post shared by 𝐌𝐚𝐫𝐢𝐚 & 𝐂𝐞𝐥𝐞𝐧𝐞 (@mariaandcelene) on Oct 4, 2020 at 7:38am PDT\n\nWhat is the safest way to celebrate the holiday?\nAccording to Dr. Tam, the safest way to celebrate is to take “every measure during every moment of our day, and always act in a way that can prevent the spread of illness to others.”\nThese measures include regular handwashing, practicing physical distancing from people outside our social bubble and wearing a mask wherever necessary.\nPlanning ahead is key, she also noted, so that guests can be prepared to practice all appropriate COVID-19 precautions.\nShe concluded her statement on Thanksgiving by reiterating that public health authorities cannot “prevent a further escalation of the pandemic” alone.\nWhatever you get up to on October 12 this year, it's definitely going to look a little different!\n*This article's cover image is for illustrative purposes only.