UPDATE #20 | 30 June 2020
Advisory on COVID-19

Disease Update
The number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 is over 10 million with over 5.5 million recovered and 504,000 deaths. Mortality rate in Canada is 8 %. In Canada we have over 103,200 cases, 8,500 deaths and 66,000 (64%) recovered. Of the 28,500 presently active cases in Canada 97% are classified as mild. The number of recovered continues to rise and more extensive testing in many provinces has not been finding significant additional cases. The curve has been flattened for the most part and local health authorities are zeroing in on flare ups to limit their spread. A National app for tracing contacts is being launched starting in Ontario on July 2. It is recommended that as it is launched that athletes and team members consider adding it to their phones as an additional mitigation factor to assist teams in cases of contact with COVID-19 positive individuals.

This progressive relaxation of restrictions will have an impact on training and access to facilities, but timing will differ across regions and across different sports. Each sport is working on plans and using the guidelines as set out in the RSAT (Return to Sport Assessment Tool) and the recent publication from the Return to Sport Task Force.

Institutes and Training Facilities
At this stage all Canadians remain under national and provincial public health guidance and with the recent changes all of the institutes (Calgary July 6) are open at least partially. The timing and level of operations possible will be dependent on the local restrictions in place at the time and vary from one institute to another. It is recommended that athletes and sports check with their institute for details of services available and how to access them.

Return to Training in Clubs and Groups
The Return to Sport Task Force has published their National Framework for COVID-19 Return to High Performance Sport as well as a Club Risk Assessment and Mitigation Checklist tool that has been developed and is available for use by sports clubs and facilities. Many sport specific return to training plans are being published using these guidelines.

Travel for Purposes of Training
After review of the provincial regulations SMAC has put together the following guidelines on traveling within Canada from one jurisdiction to another for the purposes of training. This is a fluid situation and we recommend that the links be checked as provinces are changing their recommendations as the situation allows. ( Provincial Travel Guidelines )

Many provinces have ramped up their testing protocols for the public and results are often available within 24 hours. SMAC does not recommend routine testing of asymptomatic individuals and the process of testing of individuals with symptoms may vary from one city to the next. If anyone has symptoms, they should contact their medical team and not proceed to training or contact with other members of their team until advised it is safe to do so by their medical team. Decisions on testing and appropriate follow up, quarantine and affect on team training would be sorted on a case by case basis.

As teams start to relocate and gather for group training and airline travel opens up within Canada the following recommendations will assist travellers:
  • Check the local quarantine regulations immediately prior to departure
  • Wear a mask at airport and on flight. Medical grade or N95 masks are not necessary.
  • Wash hands frequently in airport. Once settled in seat use hand sanitizer and wash hands again upon leaving plane and airport.
  • Practice rigorous cough hygiene at all times
  • Use a wipe to clean the arms of the seat, do not use the seatback table unless necessary and wash it with a wipe before using it.
  • Choose a window seat as this minimizes contacts with others.
  • Wipe down luggage including hand luggage once retrieved and exiting airport and any public transport such as a bus or taxi.

CCES Set to Resume Urine Sample Collection
The CCES has recently announced its plans to resume urine sample collection effective July 13, 2020.
On March 27, 2020, based on the provincial guidance available at the time, the CCES announced that it would suspend all doping control testing due to COVID-19. While athletes have continued to be subject to the jurisdiction of the CADP during this time, no samples have been collected.
Since that time, with the assistance of the Return to Sport Task Force, the CCES has worked to create a set of supplemental doping control procedures that include the necessary safety enhancements for athletes and doping control staff in order to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19. Some of these enhancements include:
  • Self-assessments for athletes and CCES personnel before every session.
  • Physical distancing whenever possible
  • Mandatory use of masks by all participants in a doping control session
  • Regular hand hygiene protocols and the disinfecting of all surfaces are built into the process
To read more, please visit the following link:   https://cces.ca/news/cces-resume-urine-sample-collection

Updated links from the Government of Canada and WHO
Further Questions:
Further information about COVID-19 may be obtained from your NSO Chief Medical Officer or Team Physician, or the Chief Medical Officers of the Sport Medicine Advisory Committee.