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Coronavirus Update (2/22/2021)

By dp, 02/22/21, 3:45PM CST

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Indoor sports and quarantining options updated.

Sports quarantine clarification from Minnesota Department of Health.

As students return to school, we would like to clarify that our sports quarantine guidance is in alignment with school quarantine guidance. General MDH quarantine options include the following; 

  • OPTION 1 - 14 days (this option is currently recommended and is the safest as it provides the greatest protection against spreading virus that causes COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2)
  • OPTION 2 - 10 days without testing; or
  • OPTION 3 - Seven days with a PCR-negative test (not an antigen test or antibody/blood test) if the test occurred on day five after exposure or later.

Our general quarantine guidance states that individuals may resume normal activities after stopping quarantine. However, individuals (whether in school or sports activities) who meet the criteria for a shortened quarantine are still recommended to maintain social distancing (6 feet) through day 14, even if they are released from quarantine prior to that. For sports activities that involve close contact, and for many in-person learning activities as well, maintaining 6 feet of social distancing is challenging.

Because schools are able to choose a shortened quarantine and resume normal activities even if students are unable to maintain social distancing through day 14, sports activities may also be allowed to do the same. This option carries additional risk of transmission, and it is important that school and sports administrators understand that they are choosing to assume this risk. Some school and sports administrators may have different quarantine requirements. Communication is necessary between parents and school/sports administrators to make sure all quarantine requirements are adhered to.

A shortened quarantine period may be considered for return to play:

  • if the athlete was WEARING A MASK at the time of exposure AND
  • if both the following are true:
    • The person has NOT had symptoms of COVID-19 during the quarantine period.
    • The person does NOT live with someone who has COVID-19.

If any of the three criteria above are not met, the person would need to complete a 14 day quarantine and may not return to play early.

If and only if all of the above conditions are true, quarantine may be shortened to:

  • 7 day quarantine (return to sports on day 8): athlete must have a negative PCR test (not an antigen test or antibody/blood test) with the specimen taken days 5-7 after exposure
  • 10 day quarantine (return to sports on day 11): athlete is not required to have a negative test; however, testing by PCR days 8-10 is still strongly recommended to reduce risk of spread to other athletes.

Athletes who were exposed in sports activities WHEN NOT WEARING A MASK must complete a 14 day quarantine prior to returning to sports (return on day 15). Note: These individuals may be able to complete a shorter quarantine period (i.e., returning to school) as allowed in other settings.

After stopping quarantine:

  • Athletes should strictly adhere to masking during play
  • All other mitigation measures must be followed as recommended for general settings (masking, social distancing, wash hands, and avoid crowds or settings with people who are at risk of severe illness from COVID-19)
  • Athletes should watch for symptoms until 14 days after exposure. If any symptoms occur, isolate from others right away and get tested.