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MLHU asking summer sport camps, leagues to require COVID-19 vaccination for players

The Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU) is providing updated guidance to local sports camps and leagues as the region sees a rise in COVID-19 cases.

In a release issued Friday, the health unit said an increasing number of cases and transmission have been linked to participation in summer sports camps as well as amateur sports leagues.

“Because those who participate in these activities, especially those who are unvaccinated or too young to be vaccinated, come into close contact with each other when unmasked or breathing heavily, they are at higher risk of transmitting COVID-19 and the Delta variant,” the release read.

Read more:
City of London COVID-19 vaccine policy to come into full force October 1

The MLHU has called on local sport camps and leagues to implement enhanced public health guidance.

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This includes:

  • Requiring any participant who is eligible to be vaccinated to get their vaccine (those born in 2009 or earlier).
  • Ensuring masks are always worn whenever participants are not on the field.
  • Screening participants for COVID-19 symptoms before every practice or game.
  • Minimizing pre- and post-game or practice activities and gathering time. Players should only arrive immediately before the beginning of an activity and should leave immediately once its done.
  • Limiting inter-team or inter-league play and instead focus on practices and scrimmages.
  • Keeping participant cohort groups as small as possible.

Read more:
Moderna COVID-19 vaccine gets Health Canada approval for kids 12+

“As we begin to see more COVID-19 cases and higher rates of transmission among young and amateur athletes, we can’t let our guard down” said Dr. Alex Summers, the MLHU’s associate medical officer of health.

“The Delta variant is showing us just how easily it can be spread, so we are calling on coaches, trainers, managers and league organizers to take the steps necessary to keep their players safe.”

On Friday, the MLHU reported 30 new COVID-19 cases, 34 recoveries and zero new deaths.

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