August 18, 2020

U of L athletics to follow guidelines developed by ACC

university, sports

By Cole Emery–

The University of Louisville Athletics is working collaboratively with the protocols developed by the ACC’s Medical Advisory Group. 

Since mid-May, the MAG has met weekly to share information in relation to the impact of COVID on college campuses and the return of college sports.

They released an official minimum standards report at the end of July. This report included the minimum COVID testing standards and a standard for reporting positive tests to opponent teams.

The MAG comprises of each member institution in the ACC and includes a cross-section of infectious disease experts, public health experts, campus student health experts, team physicians, athletic health care administrators and a mental health expert. 

Minimum Testing Standards

Currently, all medically appropriate weekly tests for all sports shall be molecular (PCR) testing with FDA approval or Emergency Use Authorization.

For football, all team members, and those that are in close contact with team members, shall be tested each week beginning with the week of the first competition against an opposing team. The tests must be administered within three days before the match.

For volleyball, field hockey, men’s and women’s soccer, men’s/women’s lacrosse, men’s/women’s basketball, rowing and wrestling, all team members and those in close contact with the team members will be tested every week beginning with the week of the first competition against an opposing team. 

For baseball, softball and cross country, all team members and those in close contact with the team members will be tested every other week beginning with the week of the first competition against an opposing team. The tests must be administered within three calendar days of the first competition of the week. 

For golf, tennis, fencing, track and field, and swimming/diving, regular testing would not be required, but testing of symptomatic members would be required.

Additional testing may be administered at the institution’s discretion so long as calendar day requirements are met.

Standards for reporting positive test results

In all sports, all positive test results of any team member who came into close contact (within six feet for at least 15 minutes) with any member(s) of any opposing team(s) played during the preceding 48 hours shall be shared as quickly as possible, but no later than 24 hours following the receipt of the positive test to any applicable opponent(s). 

The infected individual’s role as a team member and a summary of their interactions with the opposing team shall be included in the information sharing. Unless authorized by the individual or otherwise required by law, the individual’s name may not be shared with the opposing team(s). 

As information regarding the virus, testing and public health mitigation strategies evolve, the recommended minimum standards set forth by the MAG are subject to be adjusted.

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