Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday January 19, 2022
Athletes to face rigorous tests at Beijing Games with COVID-19 and freedom of expression
The Beijing Olympic Committee is using stricter than usual testing for COVID-19, making it harder for Canadian athletes, especially those who have recently recovered from the virus, to pass tests upon arriving in China, CBC Sports has learned.
The cycle threshold (CT) value being used in China to detect an infection is 40, Dr. Mike Wilkinson, chief medical officer for the Canadian Olympic Committee, confirmed Monday.
The higher the CT value, the less infectious a person with COVID-19 is.
Many places in Canada use a CT value of 35.
The NBA and NHL use 30. The NFL has set its threshold at 35.
“I think what Beijing is doing is that they’re doing everything they can to ensure they don’t have positives coming in,” Wilkinson said. (CBC News)
Meanwhile, competitors at the Beijing Winter Olympics will face an “Orwellian surveillance state” in China and could put themselves in danger if they speak out in support of the Uyghur Muslims, human rights and athlete advocacy groups have said.