Apr 1, 2021 – Canadian Sport Institute Pacific


SPORTS MEDICINE ADVISORY COMMITTEE UPDATE:

Disease Update:
As we move into April 2021, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide exceeds 126 million, with more than 101 million cured and 2,766,000 deaths. A number of new variants originating in the UK, South Africa and Brazil have recently been identified. In Canada, we have over 952,000 cases, 22,700 deaths and 890,000 (93%) recovered. The death rate in Canada is 2.3%. A number of provinces are experiencing record numbers of cases and hospitalizations, indicating that the third wave appears to be upon us. In some countries, the number of cases is at an all time high, reinforcing the need to remain cautious and follow recommendations on hand washing, physical distancing and the use of masks which are now mandatory in most provinces of Canada and many countries around the world.

Asymptomatic screening for COVID-19 at Canadian sport institutes across Canada:

Please see the following links for the most recent information on testing options at each CSI in Canada.

COVID-19 Testing Requests

In November 2020, National Sports Organizations received guidelines for Canada’s Olympic and Paralympic COVID-19 Testing and Control Program. An NSO COVID-19 Screening Request Form has been provided for the use of Hyris bCUBE test kits / units, recently purchased by the Canadian Olympic Committee and the Canadian Paralympic Committee. The Office of the Prosecutor is responsible for coordinating requests and invites NSOs to submit a point-of-care test request form (POCT)
Please contact Dr Andy Van Neutegem, Director of the Office of Performance Science, Research and Innovation, [email protected] or a Canadian Sport Institute if you would like more information or to discuss your POCT options.

Vaccinations

Immunizations in Canada are managed by the Federal and Provincial Immunization Working Group / National Immunization Advisory Committee with specific provincial immunization schedules, plans and programs in place. Vaccine deployment is well underway and supply chains are accelerating the immunization process.

Canadian immunization programs specifically target populations and communities most at risk initially and are then rolled out to those least vulnerable and least at risk. Canadian athletes and teams will enroll in the public health vaccination program, but we are unable to confirm specific details at this time.

Currently, there are 4 vaccines approved by Health Canada for use in Canada;

Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are mRNA vaccines of more recent technology, require specific management of the cold chain before administration and require 2 doses between 21 days (Pfizer) and 30 days (Moderna). In several provinces, the interval has been extended up to 4 months between injections to allow maximization of the 1st dose of administration with the limited supply available. In the first clinical trials, they are between 94% and 95% effective 2 weeks after the second dose, although new data will be known as the vaccination program reaches more people.

AstraZeneca is a viral vector vaccine that uses an adenovirus (identical to the common cold virus) to deliver a COVID-19 spike protein that is found on the surface of the virus to induce the immune response. It is also a 2 injection vaccine with a time interval of 4 to 12 weeks between injections.

Janssen is another viral vector vaccine which is a single dose vaccine and takes 2 weeks to develop significant protection against COVID-19. It has been shown to be 66% effective in preventing symptomatic disease of COVID-19.

All vaccines are AMA compliant.

At this point, it is too early to know for sure how long and at what level immunity will be maintained after vaccination (or even after infection). For this reason, countries, international sport federations and Canadian sport institutes continue to require proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test (and some a rapid antigen test added) before boarding. a flight or entering a competition / training camp bubble rather than a vaccine certificate. The exact time frame for COVID-19 PCR testing before departure and arrival at destination varies between 48 and 72 hours.

We will continue to monitor testing guidelines and requirements, but teams will need to confirm specific testing requirements for their destinations and competitions prior to departure.

High Performance Canadian COVID-19 Database

Thanks to those sports who reported to the COVID-19 testing database. We are still receiving information and if you are a sport marketing manager or STI manager who did not receive the email and links please contact Dr Andrew Marshall ([email protected]). Requests can be made to the Office of the Prosecutor if you need specific data for specific purposes such as a request or presentation to public health authorities.

Interprovincial travel

In Canada, some provinces have restrictions on sports travel within or across provincial borders. If camps or competitions are scheduled, please check the latest restrictions.

  • In the Atlantic provinces, there is a 14-day self-isolation requirement if entering or returning from another province outside of the Atlantic bubble.
  • In Quebec, there is no official isolation requirement for people coming from other Canadian provinces. For the INS, the recommendation is 7 days of isolation and negative tests before having access to the INS. An individual assessment is made for each circumstance.
  • Ontario has a stay-at-home order and strongly recommends self-isolation for 14 days if you are arriving or returning to Ontario from another province. The CSIO will require a 5-day self-isolation and a negative COVID-19 test (a rapid antigen test is acceptable) to access our spaces and services after an interprovincial journey by public transport (plane, train or bus). People traveling independently in a private vehicle will be exempt from this requirement.
  • In Alberta, local health authorities may place restrictions on travelers to or from other provinces, but there is no provincial decision. Athletes and coaches returning to CSI Calgary from Canada must take a negative COVID-19 test upon arrival in Calgary, followed by a telehealth call before entering CSI Calgary. Cost to be borne by NSO / athlete.
  • In British Columbia, there is a demand to avoid non-essential travel within and outside the province, but there are no specific interprovincial isolation requirements at this time. The CSIP requires athletes and staff to self-isolate for 14 days, or until day 5 COVID testing is reported, before accessing the facility or working directly with staff.

SMAC strongly recommends that NSOs traveling to another province without travel restrictions or isolation requirements, consider asymptomatic PCR testing before departure or upon arrival. If the test is negative, athletes and staff should maintain a training bubble in quarantine and retest on day 5. During and after quarantine periods, continue to follow all required preventive measures such as wearing a mask, wash your hands frequently and avoid close contact.

If an asymptomatic screening comes back positive, isolate and follow all restrictions and mandatory requirements of public health authorities, including PCR testing.

International travel

The ban on travel across the Canada-U.S. Border has been extended and there is no date to end it in the near future.

To limit the spread of COVID-19, the Government of Canada advises avoiding non-essential travel outside of Canada. For teams planning to travel to international competitions and camps, a comprehensive risk assessment and mitigation strategy process should be undertaken to assess the potential benefits of the international competition / qualification (using the RCAT-III) against the risk of travel and the potential impact of the 14-day quarantine.

For ALL international travel to Canada, there is a mandatory 14 day self-isolation requirement with PCR testing upon entry to Canada and again on day 10 in addition to proof of a negative nasal PCR test prior to l boarding on the return flight.

Additional precautions for domestic and international travel are as follows:

  • Check local quarantine regulations just before departure
  • Wear a mask at the airport and in flight. Medical grade masks are preferred, but N95 masks are not required. It seems that double masking is more effective.
  • Wash your hands frequently at the airport. Once installed in the seat, use hand sanitizer and wash your hands again when leaving the plane and the airport.
  • Adopt strict cough hygiene at all times.
  • Use a wipe to clean the arms of the seat. Do not use the backrest table or entertainment system unless necessary and wash them with a wipe before using them.
  • Choose a window seat as this minimizes contact with others.
  • Wipe baggage, including carry-on baggage, once collected and exiting the airport and any public transport such as a bus or taxi.

Click on the image below to enlarge:

Government of Canada and WHO updated links


Other questions

Further information on COVID-19 can be obtained from your NSO Chief Medical Officer or Team Physician, or the Chief Medical Officers of the Sports Medicine Advisory Committee.

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