AUSTRALIA’s Olympic athletes will be provided with special protective gear including masks and gloves, with the Australian Paralympic Committee announcing a mandatory two-day quarantine for all athletes.
Key points:The Australian Paralymics and Paralympics Committee said the Olympic athletes would have their masks and goggles taken awayThe Paralympians will have their gloves and masks taken away after two daysThe decision comes after Australia was declared the country most affected by the Zika virus and now needs to ensure it can continue hosting the GamesThis week, Australia’s Paralympian committee announced it was putting together a list of athletes who are most at risk of contracting the virus.
“These athletes, because of their special physical attributes and their unique ability to perform, will have a high level of risk,” Paralympist Committee chairwoman Sue Bower said in a statement.
“We have identified some of the most vulnerable athletes, including those who are pregnant, nursing and may have had previous infections with the Zika.”
Ms Bower has told the ABC the athletes are “not at risk” from the virus, and she is working with local authorities to make sure they have the proper protective gear.
The announcement comes after a coronavirus outbreak has rocked Australia and a new coronaviruses outbreak has been confirmed.
Australia’s Olympic Council said it was taking a cautious approach to the situation.
“It’s a precautionary measure to ensure our athletes and their families are not exposed to the virus and to protect our athletes from potentially spreading the virus,” an organisation spokesperson said.
“The Australian Olympic Committee is working closely with local and state authorities to assess the situation, and will provide further updates as we get closer to the Games.”
Ms Baker said the IOC was working to ensure all athletes were safe during the Games, and all the athletes would be given a personal protective equipment kit.
“Any athletes who have travelled to Brazil, including some who are from Australia, should be given an early testing and vaccination programme,” she said.
Topics:infectious-diseases-other,pandemic-and-malaria,australia,youth,aurelia-pacific,switzerland,vatican-city-state,saudi-arabiaFirst posted September 26, 2019 12:36:59Contact Victoria MacdonaldMore stories from Victoria