Duke’s COVID Update: Vaccines, Mandatory Masks at Cameron
The Cameron Crazies will be allowed to return indoors to cheer on the Duke Blue Devils this season with stipulations in place due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
As first reported in the News & Observer last week, proof of full COVID-19 vaccination will be mandatory, with a few exceptions, for anyone aged 12 and over entering Cameron Indoor Stadium for watch men’s or women’s basketball games this season.
A mask mandate will also be put in place.
Duke made the official announcement with details of the plan Thursday morning. The first event in what will be Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski’s last season before his retirement is the countdown to October 15.
Duke has an exhibition game with Winston-Salem State scheduled for October 30, and the regular-season home game opener is November 12 against Army West Point. Duke’s women’s team play a show with Wingate on November 4 and have their first regular-season home game on November 9 against Winthrop.
Anyone 12 years and older who is not fully vaccinated will need to prove that they have tested negative for COVID-19 within 72 hours of the game they plan to attend.
People unable to follow either of these rules can pay $ 45 to have a rapid COVID-19 antigen test on site. A negative test would allow them to enter. While a positive antigen test would prevent entry, it will be followed by a PCR test at no additional cost.
Masks will be required for anyone five years of age and older inside the building, except when those individuals are actively eating or drinking.
Last season, before the vaccines became widely available, Duke did not allow spectators or the media, beyond the TV and radio crews broadcasting the game, to attend games in Cameron.
But last month, Dr Cameron Wolfe, an infectious disease specialist from Duke who heads the ACC’s medical advisory group, told the school’s academic council that much discussion and planning was underway over the protocols. allowing Cameron viewers this season.
“You think of Cameron and you think of what makes it a great stadium,” Wolfe said. “What is it? It’s densely packed. It’s everyone screaming. It’s a dense little stadium. That makes it great. But it’s not ideal in this either. situation.
Wolfe said a review of the ventilation system at Cameron, which opened in 1940, also took place. But, in the end, he said masking, vaccination and testing would be used to get spectators back to Cameron this season.
The school has already implemented a vaccination mandate for students and, since October 1, it has become a requirement for the employment of teachers and staff. The school has also implemented a mask mandate for all interior spaces on campus.
While masks are only recommended for most outdoor spaces, the sports department requires their use for people gathered to watch games, such as football at Wallace Wade Stadium.
As for collecting information on the immunization status of people wishing to attend basketball games in Cameron, Duke set up a website, DukeCheckIn.com, to expedite this process. Proof of full vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test can be downloaded before leaving the house for each game.
The DukeCheckIn.com website is expected to go live at 5 p.m. on October 12.
Anyone who chooses not to check-in online will be able to provide their information on-site at one of the six tent locations around Cameron Indoor Stadium. These people will be given a wristband that will allow them to access the game. Staff at these locations will also offer help to people registering for online registration.
Before entering the security check area, spectators will either need to show their wristband or the online confirmation from DukeCheckIn.com.