A New Year But Same Health Problems As 2020 Hinder Sports

Who gets vaccines?

It’s a new year but the problems of 2020 have not vanished. Sports will be impacted again in most of 2021 even though there are and will be vaccines to fight COVID-19 available. The International Olympic Committee has been hoping to get the 2020 Tokyo Olympics event to take place in the summer of 2021 but a new strain of COVID-19 may cause a significant problem. Japan has further tightened entry into the country. The Japanese government will not allow most foreign nationals into the country in an effort to curb the spread of the virus. Japan had hoped to allow international travelers into the country in early 2021. The 2020 Tokyo Olympics is scheduled to start on July 23rd. The International Olympic Committee seems to be in the dither about athletes taking the vaccine and whether all athletes and related Olympic personnel should take the vaccine. “In the athletes should not cut in line to get the vaccine department because athletes are not first line responders, members of medical staffs, workers in grocery stores or living in long term health care or senior residences,” India has its own thoughts of the importance of the Olympics.

The India Parliamentary Standing Committee on Education, Women, Children, Youth and Sports has recommended that the country’s athletes, coaches and support staff travelling to Japan for the Tokyo Olympics should be put on the priority list for COVID-19 vaccines. As of now, the International Olympic Committee won’t require COVID-19 vaccines of athletes and support staff at the Tokyo Games next summer.  But American Olympians and support staff may have to get the vaccines. Sarah Hirshland, the Chief Executive Officer of the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee, is encouraging the American Olympic team to get the vaccine but not to cut in line. The 2021 Tokyo Games has a problem.

The Olympic rings are seen Monday, March 30, 2020, in Tokyo. The Tokyo Olympics will open next year in the same time slot scheduled for this year’s games. Tokyo organizers said Monday the opening ceremony will take place on July 23, 2021. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)