Coronavirus outbreak advice for athletes

Published on: Feb 5, 2020 at 10:21

As the spread of coronavirus persists, we are continuing to do all we can to offer support to athletes globally. As part of this support, we are monitoring all Tokyo 2020 qualifying events closely whilst maintaining strong communication with all relevant national bodies to safeguard athletes. Our priority is to protect the health of all competitors.

  • The WHO has labelled the coronavirus outbreak as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC).
  • We are working in partnership with the WHO and National Federations to keep you safe and informed.
  • Take heed of the WHO’s advice and follow Athlete365 for further updates.

Athlete welfare is a top priority for the IOC, and we are working with National Federations and National Health Associations to ensure that you remain well informed and updated on any of the developments related to the spread of coronavirus, and most importantly that you are safe during this crucial period. Qualifying events are being studied and appropriate health concerns are being taken care of, while Tokyo – and Japan – are working extremely hard to ensure athletes visiting the country will be protected.

To date, several events have been cancelled, including the first Beijing 2022 Test Event. Such precautionary measures have been taken in line with the advice provided by medical health professionals. As an athlete, you are often travelling between countries for competition and training, which is why it is vital that you take heed of the following advice from the WHO.

WHO advice

It is recommended that you continue to follow the measures below to reduce the general risk of transmission of acute respiratory infections:

  • Avoid close contact with people suffering from acute respiratory infections;
  • Wash your hands frequently, especially after direct contact with ill people or their environment;
  • Avoid unprotected contact with farm or wild animals;
  • People with symptoms of acute respiratory infection should practise cough etiquette (maintain distance, cover coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues or clothing, and wash their hands).

The first test event for Beijing 2022, in Alpine skiing, was cancelled. It was scheduled to take place in Yanqing on 15 and 16 February 2020, but in line with the advice offered by medical professionals, it did not go ahead. Any other event cancellations will be detailed, and the relevant athletes informed as soon as possible.

WHO has labelled the coronavirus outbreak as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). It is vital to take care of yourself and others at this time, especially when travelling between countries.

To access updates on the situation and health advice, go to the WHO website and continue to check Athlete365 for further information.