ECDOH releases new testing requirements for non-professional, non-collegiate sports tournaments

Erie County

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)– The Erie County Department of Health has released new COVID-19 restrictions for non-professional, non-collegiate sports tournaments and the facilities that host them.

The new requirements take effect March 5.

“The following requirements apply to non-professional, non-collegiate sports tournaments that include teams that travel from outside the Western New York (WNY) or Finger Lakes regions to Erie County. A tournament involves four or more teams playing multiple games or competitions at the same facility. The WNY region includes Erie, Niagara, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua and Allegany counties. The Finger Lakes region includes Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Orleans, Seneca, Wayne, Wyoming and Yates counties. This guidance does not apply to tournaments where all participating teams are from either the WNY or Finger Lakes regions.”

Erie County Department of Health

The department now requires players/competitors and coaches traveling from outside Western New York and the Finger Lakes region to Erie County to test negative for coronavirus by way of a diagnostic PCR test within 72 hours of the tournament. This applies to all tournaments, low, medium and high risk.

ECDOH says there is no diagnostic testing requirement for teams in Western New York or the Finger Lakes region.

The new testing requirements also mean facility management or event organizers are required to ensure competitors are providing a negative PCR diagnostic test.

“Any team/group with a positive player/competitor or coach cannot play during the
sport event,” according to ECDOH requirements.

Facilities will also need to fill out the ECDOH Large Gathering Event Notification Form prior to the event. The department requires the form to be submitted at least five days before the tournament.

For more information, ECDOH will host a webinar for coaches, league staff and facility managers with questions. To register, call (716) 858-7690.

Those with questions related to facilities can call the Division of Environmental Health at (716) 961-6800.

Patrick Ryan is a digital producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2020. See more of his work here.

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