CLEVELAND – Baseball season has begun and many fans are eager to be back in the stands.
Joseph Khabbaza, MD, a pulmonary and critical care physician for the Cleveland Clinic, said attending a game in-person should be relatively low risk as long as you follow COVID-19 precautions.
“The games are in large, mostly outdoor venues and that drastically decreases risk of transmission of any respiratory virus across the board,” he said.
Dr. Khabbaza recommends checking ballpark restrictions before heading to a game, as they may change depending on local government guidelines.
Most parks will have limited capacity this season, allowing fans to spread out and properly social distance.
Some stadiums may even require proof of vaccination, or a negative COVID-19 test.
Dr. Khabbaza recommends wearing a mask at the game and reminds us that masks are important to decrease transmission risk, especially in situations where there’s cheering, which generates more respiratory droplets.
He adds, masks should be worn in the concourse, and not removed unless you’re eating or drinking at your seat.
“As long as your mask is on while you’re at the concourse and there is spacing between people in line your risk of transmission will be quite low,” said Dr. Khabbaza.
Dr. Khabbaza said this year is probably not the best time to end up under a pile of fans scrambling for a homerun ball. He recommends staying in your seat, away from people you don’t know, as much as possible.