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How to do risk assessment of COVID-19 for endurance events

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Three months have passed since 2021, and many event organizers have begun to arrange new competition schedules. However, in some countries and regions, the epidemic situation continues to repeat. International sports organizations such as the ITTF and the World Athletics Federation have issued organizational norms under the epidemic. Event organizers such as the London Marathon and the Munich Marathon have all submitted to the government their event organization plans for comprehensive adjustments based on the epidemic prevention and control situation. If the event continues to be held, what risk factors need to be considered, which becomes the first step for event organizers to regroup.

Online Risk Assessment Management Tool

An epidemic prevention working group composed of medical representatives from the World Athletics Federation, International Race Medical Research Institute, International Cycling Federation, International Snow Federation, International Triathlon Association, International Paralympic Games, World Rowing Federation, and other institutions, together for Endurance event organizers have developed a set of online tools for event risk assessment and mitigation. CLICK HERE FOR ONLINE TEST
This set of tools is designed to help event organizers assess the risks of hosting events, help local and event organizations prepare for the risk of the new crown epidemic, and clarify the necessary steps to further mitigate risks to reduce risks. It is suitable for various sports and competitions. Mass participation endurance sports events at the level and scale of the event.

How to use this tool?

Start

After you confirm and read the information notes on the main page, you will get started.

There are three lines to fill in: Event name, Organisation, Email address. please make sure that the filled email address is correct because the result will send to this email directly.

Then, You can select a sport: Cycling, Nordic Skiing, Rowing, Running, Triathlon.

Sport-related Transmission Risk

There are 7 questions with answer YES or NO to determine a risk assessment score

  1. Will the event be held in a location that has documented active local transmission of COVID-19 (community spread)?
  2. Will the event be held in multiple venues/cities/regions/countries?
  3. Will the event include non-local participants (athletes) from areas that have documented active local transmission of COVID-19 (community spread)?
  4. Will the event include a significant number of participants (athletes) at higher risk of severe COVID-19 disease (e.g., some athletes with specific disabilities, people with underlying health conditions)?
  5. Will the event include conditions that could increase the risk of spread for COVID-19 (e.g. mass start or mass arrival, medical intervention, unavoidable contact or limited distancing measures)?
  6. Will the event be held indoors?
  7. What is the WHO-related pandemic phase of the country in which the event will take place?

Event overview

Understanding of the overview of the current COVID-19 situation by the event organizers

  1. Have the event organizers and responsible staff been informed about the latest available guidance on the COVID-19 outbreak (official web resources available from WHO, CDC, ECDC, UN, International Sports Federations, local public health authorities)? And are the organizers and staff concerned committed to following the available guidance?
  2. Are organizers aware of global and local daily situation reports as provided by WHO or local public health authorities?
  3. Do the organizers and responsible staff understand the risks and transmission routes of COVID-19, the steps that event attendees can take to limit spread, the recognized best practices (including respiratory etiquette, hand hygiene, physical distancing, etc.), and the travel restrictions adopted by different countries that may affect the mass gathering?

Event emergency preparedness and response plans

  1. Has a medical response contingency plan for COVID-19 been developed for this mass gathering sporting event?
  2. Does the medical response contingency plan include information about how attendees should interact with the host local healthcare system (e.g. hotline/helpline telephone number, medical teams, and first-aid points for the mass gathering, local health care system)?
  3. Is there an Emergency COVID-19 Outbreak Response Coordinator/Team in the organizing committee or other structure for the mass gathering with defined roles and responsibilities, coordinating the health preparedness and response planning for the outbreak?
  4. Has the host country/local authorities or organizer requested support from WHO and/or local public health authorities?

Have the organizers of the mass gathering event acquired the following supplies to help reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19?

  1. Personal protective equipment (e.g. masks, gloves, gowns) for onsite medical personnel
  2. Hand sanitizer and alcohol rubs/gels, tissues, frequently replaced soap canisters and closed bins for safe disposal of hygienic materials (e.g. tissues, towels, sanitary products) in washrooms and changing rooms
  3. Hand sanitizers and alcohol rub for all entrances and throughout all venues

During the event

If a person feels unwell/ shows symptoms of acute respiratory infection during the event:

  1. Is there a procedure for athletes or spectators to clearly identify whom to contact and how to do so if they or other event participants feel unwell?
  2. Is there a protocol for whom meeting organizers should contact in the hosting location to report suspected cases and request testing and epidemiological investigations?
  3. Are first-aid services or other medical services in-place and equipped to support patients with respiratory symptoms?
  4. Are there isolation rooms or mobile isolation units available onsite?
  5. Are there any designated medical facilities that manage patients with COVID-19 infection in the hosting location?
  6. Are there transporation services with trained medical professionals available to transport critically ill patients with severe acute respiratory infections to a hospital or to evacuate them from the hosting location, if necessary?
  7. Has a cleaning schedule been developed to ensure all venues are clean and hygienic – wiping surfaces and any equipment regularly with disinfectant is strongly recommended (before, during, and after the event and between each competition start)?
  8. Are there established screening measures, including temperature checks in place for participants at the point of entry, venues, routes, and on-site medical facilities (first-aid points)?
  9. Is the host country/location conducting COVID-19 laboratory diagnostic tests?
  10. Does the host country/location have a public health emergency preparedness and response plan that can address severe respiratory diseases, including COVID-19?
  11. Is there a preliminary agreement by the hosting location to provide care for any COVID-19 cases connected with the mass gathering?
  12. If the event is for a duration of 14 days or longer, does the medical response plan for the event include resources and protocols for managing all public health interventions that would be necessary and supporting the national public health authorities if participants are infected and become unwell at the event? (If the event is for less than 14 days, please answer No, not considered)
  13. If the event is for less than 14 days, does the medical response plan include protocols for organizers to notify all participants of possible exposure to COVID-19 if the organizers are made aware of any suspected or confirmed cases that attended the event? (If the event is for 14 days or longer, please answer No, not considered)

Command & Communication

Stakeholder and partner coordination

  1. Is there an established mechanism for collaboration and coordination between the health and security sectors?
  2. Are there clear and easily understood processes in place for reporting to external multi-sectoral stakeholders (including surveillance authorities, WHO, CDC, ECDC, etc.) and disseminating risk communication messages (Media)?

Command and control

  1. Is there a decision-making authority/body and an established procedure to modify, restrict, postpone or cancel the mass gathering sporting event related to the evolving COVID-19 outbreak?
  2. Is there a plan to activate a strategic health operations center if there are suspected COVID-19 cases in connection with the sporting mass gathering?
  3. Have the mass gathering organizers, volunteers, workforce, and staff underwent training and exercises on personal safety procedures and emergency mitigation measures (including those specifically listed in this checklist)?

Risk communication

  1. Is there a risk communication strategy for the event mass gathering in regard to COVID-19?
  2. Is there a designated person(s) to lead media activities and tasked with managing all external communications with national and international government officials, the general public, and the media?
  3. Will national and international media as well as social media be monitored to quell or clarify rumors?
  4. Will there be a coordinated effort between official media channels and social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to push out targeted messaging from event organizers to counter rumors and false statements as well as to provide updates and status reports on the event?

Health awareness & response

Public health awareness of COVID-19 before and during the event

  1. Has public health advice on clinical features of COVID-19, preventive measures such as respiratory etiquette, hand hygiene practices, and physical distancing, been shared with all staff and volunteers involved in the event, athletes, the public, and personnel of all relevant stakeholders?
  2. Has information on the at-risk populations been provided to all athletes, the public, and others so they may make an informed decision on their attendance based on their personal risks?
  3. Has public advice included information on the meaning of the following measures: quarantine, self-isolation, and self-monitoring?

Surge capacity

Are there any surge arrangements in place in the event of a public health emergency during the mass gathering – (i.e. suspected and confirmed cases of COVID-19?
  1. Do these surge arrangements include funding for mitigation measures?
  2. Do these surge arrangements include stockpiles of equipment (e.g. personal protective equipment, etc.)
  3. Do these surge arrangements include training of extra staff?
  4. Do these surge arrangements include volunteers?

Specific measures

Athlete’s related mitigation measures

  1. Will the competition be limited to elite/professional athletes?
  2. Will the athletes be separated from other groups, such as officials, support staff, and spectators, to limit transmission?
  3. Will pre-travel health checks and screening be performed on all non-local athletes to ensure non contagiosity and that underlying co-morbidities and disabilities are documented?
  4. Will athletes from viral hot spots (domestic or international) are prevented from competing?
  5. Will normal pre-event mass gatherings such as event parties, expos, registration tables, and pre-event meetings be modified or canceled?
  6. Can the flow of athletes to reach the starting area or leave from the post-event area be optimized to limit contact and potential transmission? This includes means of transportation (e.g. buses)
  7. Will the event registration system include outbreak-specific information for participants at higher risk?
  8. Will the competition be limited to local participants?

General Hygiene mitigation measures

  1. Will cleaning and disinfection of common areas and equipment (e.g. restrooms, changing rooms, call rooms, mixed zones etc.) be implemented?
  2. Do you plan an arrangement to handle biohazard materials with professional companies ready to dispose of medical waste and materials exposed to COVID 19?
  3. Will athletes be given sealed bags/containers to allow for the safe disposal or storing of all hygienic materials (e.g. tissues, towels, water bottles etc.)?
  4. Will the event/community offer contact tracing programs to inform volunteers and runners of potential race day exposures?

Workforce related mitigation measures

  1. Can the event secure enough medical staff and volunteers in the context of the outbreak?
  2. Will medical volunteers required to be in quarantine post-event by their employer? If so, will this have an impact on securing a medical team for the event?
  3. Will course and finish area medical tents be large enough to provide social distancing as runners seek medical care?
  4. Has event reviewed and implemented new triage and treatment protocols (outbreak-specific) for all event medical stations.
  5. Does the event medical encounter system include outbreak-specific items?
  6. Will the medical team have the means to notify family members if a runner needs additional medical support or follow-up. Should include a database of runners contacts made available to the medical team.
  7. Will the medical staff have appropriate personal protective equipment to evaluate and treat patients?
  8. Will the medical triage security system implemented and enforced?
  9. Will there be an individual risk assessment and management organized for categories (officials, volunteers, workforce) with access to restricted areas?
  10. Will pre-travel health checks and screening be performed on all non-local workforce and volunteers to ensure non-contagiously and that underlying co-morbidities and disabilities are documented?
  11. Will there be daily health checks for categories (officials, volunteers, workforce) with access to restricted areas?
  12. Will non-medical volunteers be required by their workplace to quarantine before returning to work?
  13. Has the event organizer established a reliable communication tool to inform volunteers, staff, and officials during the event (i.e. Text Messaging Systems)?

Competition course-related mitigation measures

  1. Can the organizer extend the race time or arrange smaller starting waves?
  2. Can the start and finish line areas and processes be adapted to take into account social distancing measures? (e.g. color-coding finishing lanes, medal distribution)
  3. Will the event offer possibility for social distance on the course, to keep social distance from runners trailing other runners?
  4. Will the event’s hydration and refueling plan be modified to include single-serve bottles and closed prepackaged food?
  5. Will the event organizer place the responsibility of hydration and refueling needs on the runners (races up to 20 km)?
  6. Are there procedures to dispose of used personal items (e.g. towels, bottles, cups) on the racecourse?

Spectators’ related mitigation measures

  1. Can the event be held without spectators/VIPs/guests?
  2. Will the sporting event have designated seating for VIPs/guests?
  3. Will the event organizer provide physical barriers to separate spectators from athletes and volunteers on the course, and at the start and finish line areas?
  4. Will the event organizers set up an exit strategy for participants to meet family safely by eliminating family meeting areas?

Thank you page

After questions are answered you will on Thank you page.

This tool will send the result to your email address

Receive result on your email

You will receive a PDF file sent by [email protected]

View result report

There are 5 level risk total: Very High Risk, High Risk, Moderate Risk, Low Risk, Very Low Risk

According to your answers, this tool will tell you what is the risk level of your event.

 

What’s more on the last page, they will make some suggestions in the action list. there are very helpful.

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