As the scheduled start of training camps nears, the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) has instructed officers to talk to their clients about risk factors that could make them more susceptible to serious illness as a result of COVID. -19.
“The NFLPA directs you to provide each of your clients with information on important risk factors that was provided by the Center for Disease Control,” the union wrote in a letter sent to officers Monday and obtained by ESPN. “By mid-July, you should engage all of your clients in conversations about the vital importance of carefully reviewing this information with their personal doctor.
“(Players) should ask their personal doctors all kinds of questions about these risk factors based on their medical history and their jobs as NFL players. They should also discuss any risk factors with the team’s doctors, “the document added.RELATED
The letter provides a link to the website of the Center for Disease Control, which indicates that “people of any age with relevant medical conditions” and also explains the type of conditions that put a person at greater risk of suffering a serious illness from of COVID-19.
The outlined conditions include, according to the letter:
– Chronic kidney disease
– Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
– Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) by solid organ transplantation
– Body Mass Index of 30 or more: Obesity
– Serious heart disease such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies.
– sickle cell disease
– Type 2 diabetes mellitus
The letter includes a second list of conditions that the CDC has determined that “may” put someone at increased risk for severe disease due to COVID-19, including asthma, hypertension or high blood pressure, other immune deficiencies, liver disease, pulmonary fibrosis and Type 1 diabetes, among others.
“We want each player to be carefully informed about their medical situation while making decisions about returning to play and throughout the course of the season. In this way, proactive commitment will help players reach that goal, “says the letter.
Included in the new league and player collective bargaining agreement, training camps should not begin earlier than 47 days prior to a team’s first regular-season game, making July 28 the reporting date for most of the teams.
Last week, the NFL said it still plans to open training camps and start the regular season on time, even though coronavirus and security protocols are not yet finalized.
The NFL and NFLPA have had constant discussions about protocols as well as other issues, such as what would happen if players decide it was too risky to play and what would happen to the 2021 salary cap as a result of less economic gains in 2020.