Since the COVID-19 pandemic is still a serious issue worldwide, many industries have taken precautions to protect the health of all the people involved, including athletes.
For instance, in September 2021, the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC) introduced a vaccine requirement. It was decided that all athletes, employees, etc. had to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 unless they had a medical exemption.
Therefore, it’s great to hear that all of the 200+ US athletes participating in the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing are fully vaccinated, without a single person asking for an exemption.
This attitude isn’t always observed in the professional sports industry. For example, it was estimated that Kyrie Irving, an NBA player, would lose over $17 million due to his refusal to get a vaccine shot.
According to The Associated Press, USOPC Chief Medical Officer Jonathan Finnoff believes the Olympic team’s willingness to get vaccinated is owing to the educational content provided by the Committee and the intention to avoid the 21-day quarantine for unvaccinated athletes.
Finnoff notes that around 100 out of the 600 US athletes competing in the Summer Olympics in Tokyo last year weren’t vaccinated. USOPC CEO Sarah Hirshland adds that repeating such a scenario would have meant uncertainty regarding the starting lines once again.
The 2022 Winter Olympic Games in Beijing start on February 3. We know that the Olympics are among the most-watched sporting events worldwide, and this should be another opportunity to witness fantastic scores and record-breaking results.