THE TOKYO OLYMPICS CAN HAPPEN SAFELY — BUT THE OLYMPIC FAMILY NEEDS TO COMMIT TO PLAYBOOKS
The 'health bubble' system implemented during the Handball World Cup, held in Egypt, ensured the safety of all national teams taking part in the event amidst the spread of Covid-19.
All teams will undergo Covid-19 swabs before and after training and matches and will avoid any kind of gatherings out of games' courts. The system includes the hotel that hosted the participating teams as no one will be allowed in or out of the hotel during the teams' stay.
Teams were taken straight from the airport to the hotel and allowed to go to the courts where training and games are held. The system didn’t allow for participants to exit this 'bubble' until they left Egypt.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC), the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), and the Tokyo 2020 organizing committee (Tokyo 2020) draw upon the lessons learned from the successful measures being implemented in other sectors, including the successful resumption of thousands of international sports events across the world.
The IOC, the IPC, and Tokyo 2020 published four Playbooks, resources which outline the personal responsibilities key stakeholders must take to play their role in ensuring safe and successful Olympic and Paralympic games this summer.
Playbooks provide a framework of basic principles that each key stakeholder group will follow before they travel to Japan, when entering Japan, during their time at the Games, and when leaving the Games. They provide direction and set parameters that will enable people and organizations to advance their planning at this stage.
These Playbooks are the official, centralized source of information for the Olympic and Paralympic Games stakeholders, and the Playbooks will be updated with more detail over the coming months as the global situation relating to Covid-19 becomes clearer ahead of the Games.
The Playbooks also outline a typical journey for each stakeholder group, beginning with measures starting 14 days before arriving in Japan, testing before departure and upon arrival in the country, and the use of smartphone applications to report health and support contact tracing during the Games. Measures will also be in place to identify, isolate, and treat any potential positive cases.
The Playbooks are based on the extensive work of the all-partners task force, which also includes the World Health Organization, government of Japan, Tokyo metropolitan government, independent experts, and organizations from across the world.
The Playbooks will be updated in April 2021, when more information is available.
The Playbook International Federations (IFs) was created to outline conditions and constraints that will be required by international Olympic and Paralympic federations. The first version of the Playbook aims to provide the main principles that will guide IFs to build more detailed plans as the context that they will face becomes clearer. The Playbook IFs states that vaccines are one of many tools available in the toolbox to be used at the appropriate time and in the appropriate way, yet they are not required in order to participate in the Games, and all of the rules outlined in this Playbook will apply, whether or not a participant has received the vaccine.
The Playbook Broadcasters sets out the responsibilities of Rights Holding Broadcasters (RHBs). Accredited RHB will play an active and integral role in the story of these Games. Every RHB participating in the Games will be required to appoint a Covid-19 Liaison Officer. This person will be a key contact for all matters related to Covid-19. He will also be the contact for the IOC, IPC, Tokyo 2020, Olympic Broadcasting Services (OBS), and the Japanese health authorities.
The Playbook Press sets out the responsibilities of accredited press (written, photographic, and non-rights holders), and should be considered alongside wider information received from Press Organization and Tokyo 2020. The rules apply in the same way to every press representative, regardless of their position or where they are living, just as they also apply to all other Games participants. All press and photo areas across the competition and non-competition venues of Tokyo 2020 Games have been redesigned in order to ensure that the required measures for physical distancing are respected at all times by the E-accredited press. Similarly, access to the Olympic/Paralympic Village Plaza Mixed Zone will be limited.
Requirements for physical distancing at the Main Press Center (MPC), venue media centers, press tribunes, press conference rooms, mixed zones, photo positions, and media lounges have resulted in a significant reduction of capacities for all press and photo areas, with an average loss of 50 percent in capacity for both.
The Playbook Athletes and officials sets out the responsibilities of athletes and team officials and should be considered alongside wider information received from National Olympic Committee (NOC)/National Paralympic Committee (NPC). The rules apply in the same way to every athlete and official, regardless of sports disciplines or locations.
Tokyo is still the best prepared Olympic city ever, committed and determined to organize these Games in a safe and secure way for all the participants and to make these Olympic Games fit for the post-coronavirus world.
We are looking forward to unforgettable Games, which will be the light at the end of the tunnel. They will be a celebration of solidarity, of unity of humankind in all our diversity, and of resilience. We all have to look into the further future in order to strengthen the role of sport for a more human-centered and inclusive post-coronavirus world.
For more details about TOKYO 2020 PLAYBOOKS, please visit www.olympic.org/tokyo-2020-playbooks