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Doctor reflects on the coronavirus pandemic on Thanksgiving

Last November, while health officials urged people to stay home for the holidays, Dr. William Gilbert was delivering babies.

SACRAMENTO COUNTY, Calif. — Last November, health officials across the country were asking people to stay home for the holidays, or to at least host gatherings outdoors. In California,  COVID-19 cases were averaging nearly three times what they are today. 

This time last year, Women’s Medical director and doctor, William Gilbert was delivering babies at Sutter Medical Center in Sacramento. 

"It’s been pretty tough," Gilbert said. "I’m an obstetrician, so babies didn’t slow down during the pandemic, they still came. We had some sick mothers and sick babies." 

These days, he said he had a lot to be thankful for.

Credit: ABC10
Dr. William Gilbert

"I’m grateful for the fact that we’re finally getting through this stupid pandemic," Gilbert explained. "We have surges, but to see most of the hospital not have that many patients there, and they’re home with their families, is wonderful."

Vaccines and boosters had played into his optimism too, but he said it wasn't over yet. 

"If people are vaccinated, those infections will be less," he explained. "If we're not vaccinated (there are) going to be problems. We’ve reached a level where it’s not as bad as it was before, but I think we really need to keep our guard up. Wear mask where appropriate, social distance, wash your hands--  these small things, we can enjoy our holidays, enjoy or families and hopefully get back to normal."

WATCH MORE:  Doctors suggest getting a rapid COVID-19 test before holiday gatherings.