WWE Enacts New COVID-19 Protocol For Employees After Bad Outbreak
WWE has been hit hard by COVID-19 and the highly infectious Omicron variant. Numerous talent and personnel have been sidelined with the virus and this lead to some on-the-fly restructuring of every show, be they house shows or live TV, this past week. It appears to have even reached the top of WWE, as Chairman Vince McMahon and a number of the most powerful backstage names were absent at this past Monday's Raw. In the wake of all of this, WWE has now released an internal memo detailing new company protocols for combating COVID-19 that will be put into effect starting tomorrow at WWE Day 1.
Dave Meltzer is reporting in The Wrestling Observer that WWE just sent out a new company-wide memo detailing the protocols everyone will be following backstage at events until further notice. The new COVID-19 fighting protocols are as follows:
– Masks must be worn backstage by all talent, staff, crew, or guests. There will be mandatory fines for talent and staff not adhering to the policy.
– It is recommended that everyone get either a Pfizer or Moderna vaccine and a booster.
– Fully vaccinated personnel would be asked questions and be observed before entering the venue. Personnel are required to self-report any symptoms to the medical staff.
– Any personnel with symptoms is required to take a COVID test.
– Anyone who tests positive and is not vaccinated will have a minimum ten day quarantine and heart testing before they can return.
– Anyone who tests positive and is vaccinated will be out for six days.
– On day five, if personnel are asymptomatic for 24 hours, they must pass two Antigen tests at least 24 hours apart before returning.
– Anyone in close contact with someone who tests positive is allowed to come to work but will be tested daily for five days after exposure if they show no symptoms.
While it's good to see WWE taking action to prevent further COVID-related issues, it does ironically come on the heels of news from just the other day that COVID testing was no longer required in WWE, whereas it had been mandatory twice a week for talents in NXT and the Performance Center and once a week for the main rosters on Raw and SmackDown.
WWE has always taken something of a cavalier attitude towards the COVID-19 pandemic in order to keep the show going without pause, but it appears this time they are taking things a bit more seriously as it has now hit so close to home and cost them.