NCAA Gives Statement on Coronavirus, March Madness

The NCAA is preparing for March Madness and the 2020 NCAA men’s basketball tournament, but they have to consider the nationwide coronavirus pandemic when it comes to their plans. The NCAA has established a “coronavirus advisory panel” to monitor the COVID-19 virus ahead of the start of the tournament on Tuesday, March 17.

The panel commits to putting the focus on health and safety of the athletes and those traveling to different tournament sites like Houston, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, New York, Albany, Cleveland, Greensboro, Omaha, Sacramento, Spokane, St. Louis, and Tampa.

The 2020 Final Four is scheduled to be played at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.

“The NCAA is committed to conducting its championships and events in a safe and responsible manner,” said Donald Remy, NCAA chief operating officer. “Today we are planning to conduct our championships as planned, however, we are evaluating the COVID-19 situation daily and will make decisions accordingly.

“We are actively monitoring COVID-19 in the United States and will make recommendations on competition based on the evolving medical protocols established by the CDC, NIH and state and local authorities,” said Hainline. “We are in daily contact with the CDC and are advising leadership on the Association’s response to this outbreak.”

The coronavirus mainly comes from animals and a majority of those who were infected early either worked at or frequently visited the Huanan seafood wholesale market in Wuhan, according to The Guardian. The virus is similar to Severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars) and Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome (Mers).

The Wuhan coronavirus is transmitted from person to person through “droplet transmission.” That means an infected person can pass the virus by sneezing or coughing on another person as well as by direct contact.

While a majority of the cases have been detected in China, it has now reached many countries around the world including the United States. It has also been confirmed in Italy, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, and many other eastern countries.

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