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Miami Marlins Covid-19 Outbreak: What We Can Learn From Sports Teams About Keeping Players Safe



After more than a dozen Miami Marlins players tested positive for coronavirus, scheduled games in Miami and Philadelphia, where the last Marlins played, were postponed.

While some may doubt the wisdom of gaming, even without fans at the stand, the lessons that sports leagues have learned so far about keeping players safe from the virus can be lessons for us. all of us.

Shortened seasons and “bubble” games to control the spread are some of the ways sports leagues have managed to continue to play during the pandemic.

The National Hockey League and the National Basketball Association are keeping their players in a bubble – a closed environment where players live, practice and play all the games, similar to a home-based strategy and avoid people outside your own bubble.

So far, so good: During its two-week training camp that concluded Saturday, the NHL has administered thousands of tests to more than 800 of its players, the league said Monday. There were two positive tests the first week and no second.
The Miami Marlins season was maintained after more players tested positive for Covid-1[ads1]9

“All 24 teams entered the safe zone in Edmonton and Toronto yesterday,” the NHL said in a statement on Monday. “Each of the 52 members of the 24 teams (Players and Club staff) will be tested daily,” the NHL said Monday in a statement.

In the NBA, which has long kept its players in a bubble at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, none of the 344 players tested since July 20 tested positive for coronavirus, league and the players union said Wednesday.

Only two players have tested positive since the balloon opened, and that was between 7 and 13 July.

The NBA resumes its 2019-2020 season Thursday at a resort near Orlando.

And the leagues are taking the bubble strategy seriously. Two NBA players who mistakenly left the bubble – Richaun Holmes of the Sacramento Kings and Bruno Caboclo of the Houston Rockets – had to go back into quarantine, wasting practice time.

Outside of sports, tight bubbles may not be realistic for everyone – but it’s crucial to keep in touch with others outside your home by avoiding busy places like bars or even family gatherings.

In Maryland, contact trackers found 44% of people who tested positive for the virus recently attended family reunions, the Gov. said. Maryland Larry Hogan Wednesday.
Creating a pandemic social bubble: a way to guide

Tracers also found 23% of new Covid-19 cases attended the housing party and 21% attended outdoor events, Hogan said at a news conference.

“The fundamental things to avoid crowds, physical separation, universal wearing of masks, closing bars, hand hygiene – those things are important and can make a difference. So we hope you appreciate this and do it strictly. much, ”Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease expert, told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on Monday.

Smaller is better

Bubbles, though, are not feasible for a sport like baseball because of the size of the teams, according to MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred.

“We should have had multiple locations probably just to have enough facilities to make it work, the number of people involved and the number of people supporting the number of players was much, much bigger in our sport, “said Manfred Network MLB

“I think the NBA and the NHL have an advantage – a smaller number of players, a shorter period of time,” Manfred said. “I understand why they did what they did. I’m just not sure it was feasible for us.”

The NBA and the players' union say no player tested positive for the coronavirus, a day before the season resumes

The close and contact nature of basketball games makes the bubbles more necessary.

“When we were discussing what kind of protocols would be for the best safety precautions for baseball players, there was a certain set of things that were done. That’s going to be a little different when you’re talking about a lot more contact. the sport, “Fauci told CNN on Monday.

Young and healthy people are not necessarily immune

With the number of young people running the wave at Kovid-19 in many areas of the country, another lesson from these athletes emerges: The virus does not discriminate and infect even young, fit and healthy athletes.

The Marlins example is also a reminder of how quickly and silently the virus spreads. Within days, the team went from a few positive tests to 17, according to ESPN.

And considering that the Miami team comes from one of the biggest Covid-19 hot spots in the country, it’s a reminder that when you travel to or from a place where there’s a large number of cases, following the guidelines of U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. on self-isolation is a good idea.

Recently, at a hospital in Massachusetts, the coronavirus spread to a non-Covid-19 unit after an employee traveled to a hot spot and then returned to work, CNN affiliate WWLP reported.

Testing is important

Buzz or not, sports teams are showing the importance of testing. As the NHL said, it is testing every player, every day.

The National Women’s Football League was the first to return to play in the midst of the pandemic, replacing their season at the end of June with a 30-day tournament instead of a regular schedule.

Just before they left to play in the league in Utah, six players and four staff members from Orlando Pride tested positive for the virus. The team withdrew and the tournament continued, with no further cases reported. Without those tests, many more players and staff could have been infected.

More than six months after the virus was discovered, it is still unknown. There is no cure and no vaccine. What is certain, say health experts, is that social distance and wearing a mask offer the best protection for now.

“We’re not potent,” CDC Director Robert Redfield told ABC Tuesday. “We have the most powerful weapon in our hands right now. I mean, it’s an enormously powerful weapon. It’s just a simple, flimsy mask.”

“This virus can be defeated if people wear a mask.”

CNN’s Allen Kim, Wayne Sterling, Shelby Lin Erdman, Maggie Fox and Jennifer Henderson contributed to this report.


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