Japan is considering requiring negative COVID-19 test results or vaccination records from fans attending the Tokyo Olympics, a newspaper reported Monday, as a new poll showed public opposition to the games remains strong.
Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga made clear Friday that he wants to see fans at the games, though the president of the Tokyo organizing committee suggested a final decision on the issue may be a long time coming.
As for athletes, International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach says they can travel to Tokyo with “full confidence” the games will be safe — although in an Olympic first, they will have to sign a waiver acknowledging they may face health risks or death due to COVID-19 or the intense summer heat.
Organizers initially planned to have about 10,000 doctors, nurses and other medical staff on standby for the games but have had to cut that number down to about 7,000 because they’ll be needed to handle ongoing COVID-19 outbreaks, Bloomberg reports.
The government is considering mobilizing doctors and nurses from the Self-Defense Forces to make up the shortfall, the defense minister has said. The organizers have had better luck in attracting certified sports doctors to work at the games, with 395 volunteers having applied for 200 slots.