Health expert urges parents to minimize play dates amid coronavirus fears

BOSTON (WHDH) - With schools shut down across the Bay State for the next three weeks in an attempt to stop the spread of the coronavirus, parents are faced with the tough question of whether or not to let their kids socialize.

Dr. Helen Boucher of Tufts Medical Center is urging families to think small when it comes to playdates.

“I think there are decisions that have to be made. We can’t tell kids that they can’t interact with anybody, but I think small groups might be reasonable,” she said. “The idea is small groups, get the kids outside, make sure nobody is ill, and keep it to a minimum.”

Boucher added that preventing the spread of coronavirus will help everyone in the end.

“All these social distancing measures are designed to slow the rate of infections with the coronavirus, so that we in the healthcare business can be as prepared and able to treat patients when they need us,” she explained.

Boucher went on to say that people need to remember that everyone is in this together as they navigate these uncertain times.

“I think for all of us in the community, it’s important to be kind and patient with each other as we go through this,” she said.

Gov. Charles D. Baker announced Sunday the closure of all Massachusetts schools for at least the next three weeks.

Classes were already suspended in many parts of the state, including Boston.

Some districts are holding classes on Monday to give students a chance to retrieve belongings and pick up materials for home instruction.

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