The NCAA’s COVID-19 Medical Advisory Group has updated its recommendations for COVID-19 testing in college sports.
According to a release posted to the association’s website, fully vaccinated student-athletes and other Tier 1 individuals with no COVID-19-like symptoms may be exempt from routine testing.
The release clarifies that Tier 1 individuals are those with the highest risk of exposure at championships and include team travel parties and officials. Student-athletes and other Tier 1 participants who are not vaccinated must continue to undergo testing at NCAA championships.
The new policy will be effective starting May 1 for NCAA Championships that have not started, or the next round of competition for those championships that are already underway.
The NCAA said that if there is evidence of substantial transmission in the community or emerging variants, then testing may need to be resumed even for those individuals who have been vaccinated.
The update also notes that vaccinated student-athletes and other Tier 1 individuals with no COVID-19-like symptoms do not need to quarantine, be restricted from work or get tested after exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. Although their risk of infection is low, these individuals should still monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 for 14 days after exposure and should isolate themselves from others if they experience symptoms, be clinically evaluated for COVID-19 (including SARS-CoV-2 testing, if indicated) and inform their primary athletics health care provider or physician of their vaccination status from the onset of symptoms to care.