March 10, 2020
STATEMENT on COVID-19
With the recent news and events worldwide in association with the CORONA VIRUS
(COVID-19), curling is taking the following steps and encouraging all our facilities to be proactive and continue monitoring situations as they develop.
- Abstain from customary handshakes pre/post game. Use other forms of non-contact greetings.
- Provide disinfectants wipes for cleaning of rock handles prior to start of each game
- Provide hand sanitizer in club rooms for all participants
- Strongly advise all participants to restrict their participation if feeling ill. Do not attend to the curling venue if you show any symptoms associated with the virus.
We will continue to monitor the information provided to us by the “Own the Podium” led Sport Medicine Advisory Committee comprised of Chief Medical Officers from the Canadian Olympic Committee, the Canadian Paralympic Committee and the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Sport Institutes along with the World Health Organization, Government of Canada, Government of Ontario and local health units. We will update the advisory if any new information is provided.
Recommendation for protecting yourself and preventing the spread of this illness includes frequent hand washing and covering your nose and mouth when coughing. Try to cough into your arm, away from others, or into tissue paper (to be disposed in a toilet). Wash your hands immediately afterwards. You should avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness.
Research on respiratory infections in travelling with sporting teams suggests that the most likely pattern of spread occurs within a team, rather than from external sources. When an unwell team member joins the team, due to regular close physical contact between team members, the infections can spread readily (Valtonen et at, 2019). Consideration should be given for delaying travel for team members who are unwell.
What to do if you think you have COVID-19:
Because the early symptoms of COVID-19 are similar to other respiratory illnesses, if you have any common symptoms (fever, cough and shortage of breath) you should contact your doctor’s office and arrange to have a consultation. You should also restrict your participation and attendance in large group settings.
Face masks are most effective in preventing transmission when worn by people who are unwell. If you are well, masks only need to be worn by those who have close
contact with those who are unwell (i.e., recommended for health care workers). Correct fitting of face masks is most important to their effectiveness.
At this time, there is no specific treatment for COVID-19. The goals of medical management are to identify other treatable causes of illness (such as influenza), manage any complications from COVID-19 and provide advice on how to limit the transmission from known causes. There are efforts internationally to produce a vaccine and to identify if any of the current antiviral medications are effective and safe. An update is expected to be released in mid-2020. A vaccine will likely take longer as it will have to go through longer clinical trials to confirm safety and efficacy. Continue to be active and promote a healthy lifestyle. Remember, if you are feeling ill please restrict your participation and monitor your symptoms prior to restarting activities.
NOCA Executive Director