USOPC Requiring COVID-19 Vaccination for American 2022 Winter Olympians

The United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee will require all 2022 Olympians and Olympic hopefuls to be fully vaccinated, it announced on Wednesday.

Starting Nov. 1, the governing body will require “employees, athletes, contractors and others to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19” to access facilities, including the Olympic and Paralympic training centers (athletes will be able to apply for a medical or religious exemption). The requirement will also apply to the full Team USA delegation at future Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Olympic hopefuls will have to show proof of vaccination by Dec. 1. Anyone who receives an exemption will be required to undergo daily COVID testing for any days they are accessing a USOPC facility or representing Team USA at a delegation event like the Olympics.

About 83% of the 600-plus American athletes at the Tokyo Olympics were vaccinated, according to the USOPC, and the International Olympic Committee estimated that 85% of all athletes staying in the Olympic village were vaccinated. About 240 American athletes are expected to compete at the Beijing Games.

Ahead of the Tokyo Games, a few prominent American athletes revealed they were not vaccinated, including swimmer Michael Andrew. Andrew said that he had previously contracted COVID-19 and that he “didn’t want to put anything in my body that I didn’t know how I would potentially react to.”

The IOC did not require vaccines for Tokyo, but strongly encouraged them, and many NOCs followed suit.

“The stark reality is that this pandemic is far from over,” USOPC CEO Sarah Hirshland said in a letter obtained by the Associated Press. “This step will increase our ability to create a safe and productive environment for Team USA athletes and staff, and allow us to restore consistency in planning, preparation and service to athletes.”

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BadShoulder
27 days ago

LETS GOOOO

Hswimmer
27 days ago

Lol

Snarky
27 days ago

Finally some sanityq.

Bruh
27 days ago

Trash policy

John
27 days ago

* sees Michael Andrew reference

Buckle up, this will be a ride!

monsterbasher
27 days ago

Damn. There goes Michael Andrew’s gold medal chance for cross country skiing.

Swimpop
Reply to  monsterbasher
27 days ago

They have a 50m cross country ski race?

Bruh
Reply to  Swimpop
27 days ago

50? More like 150

Meeeeee
Reply to  Bruh
26 days ago

Funny and I agree he should change his training some. But he was the fastest American this year.

Steve Nolan
27 days ago

Can they make it retroactive to the summer team? Asking for a Concerned Patriot.

Greg Peter
26 days ago

Fully expecting this article to blow up with MA comments.

About Torrey Hart

Torrey Hart

Torrey is from Oakland, CA, and majored in media studies and American studies at Claremont McKenna College, where she swam distance freestyle for the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps team. Outside of SwimSwam, she has bylines at Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports, SB Nation, and The Student Life newspaper.

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