The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and International Paralympic Committee (IPC) have unveiled the second version of the Tokyo Games Playbook for athletes and officials, which outline the rules participants at the Games must adhere to.
Version 2 of The Playbook is more stringent than the first version and the IOC has warned further restrictions could be imposed in the third and final version of the playbook if necessary.
The COVID-19 countermeasures included in the Playbooks (rulebooks) published in February this year have since been reviewed and significantly updated in order to address the emergence of new mutant coronavirus strains and the evolving situation of the pandemic.
New rules that have to be observed by everyone involved in the Games during their stay in Japan have been incorporated, and others updated, so that the Tokyo 2020 Games can be held safely.
The most important measures, which were agreed by all the five parties, appear in the second edition of the Playbooks and are as follows:
- All participants at the Games will be required to take two COVID-19 tests on separate days, within 96 hours before they fly to Japan and obtain negative certificates for both. There will be a further COVID-19 test on arrival in Japan.
- In principle, athletes and all those in close proximity with athletes will be tested daily to minimise the risk of undetected positive cases that could transmit the virus. The dates and times will be set in line with the sports events and schedule.
- All other Games participants will be tested daily for three days after their arrival. After the first three days and throughout their stay, they will be tested regularly, based on the operational nature of their role and level of contact with athletes.
- All Games participants must, in principle, only follow the activities they have outlined in their activity plan. They must minimise contact within one metre of Games participants who have already been in Japan for more than 14 days, and Japanese residents.
- All Games participants must, in principle, exclusively use dedicated Games vehicles, and they are not allowed to use public transport.
- All Games participants must, in principle, eat only in the limited locations where COVID-19 countermeasures are in place, including catering facilities at Games venues, their accommodation’s restaurant, and their rooms, using room service or food delivery.
- Close contacts are defined as those who have prolonged contact (for 15 minutes or more) with a person who has a confirmed positive COVID-19 test, within one metre, without wearing a face mask. This is particularly applicable when such contact happens in enclosed spaces such as hotel rooms or vehicles. Cases will be confirmed by the Japanese health authorities.
- Participants will also be supplied with a Samsung smartphone, and must download a health reporting and a contact confirming application (COCOA) as part of the playbook measures. Athletes will need to input their daily body temperature (taken by a thermometer) and whether or not they have any other Covid-19 related symptoms after entering Japan.
- Further details on the ‘COVID-19 Liaison Officers’ (CLO), who will be appointed by the respective National Olympic Committee or National Paralympic Committee, is included in the playbook.Your CLO will be responsible for ensuring that you understand the content of and the importance of complying with the Playbook.They will be given specific training before the Games and there will be support framework in place for CLOs dedicated to each stakeholder group.
- A third version of the Playbooks is expected to be published in June. As with all the previous versions, it will take the latest scientific developments into consideration.