Chiefs announce positive COVID-19 test for fan who attended opener


Fans wait for the start of the NFL opening game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Houston Texans Thursday, Sept. 10, 2020, in Kansas City, Mo. (Jeff Roberson/AP)

The Kansas City Chiefs announced on Thursday that a fan who attended Arrowhead Stadium for last week’s NFL season opener against the Houston Texans has tested positive for COVID-19.

Under local and NFL health guidelines, the Chiefs allowed 22 per cent capacity of Arrowhead for the first game of the season, which amounted to more than 16,000 fans in attendance.

According to The Kansas City Star, the Kansas City Health Department has advised 10 fans to quarantine after possible exposure to the coronavirus as a result of being part of the group watching the game with the infected fan. The group was seated in the lower level of the stadium.

In their statement, the Chiefs say the organization was able to use contact tracing to determine who else the fan came in contact with, including other ticket holders and stadium service staff.

Here is the full statement from the Chiefs regarding the positive test:

As the City of Kansas City Health Department has reported, a guest who attended Thursday night’s game at Arrowhead Stadium has presented positive for COVID-19. We have worked in close cooperation with Dr. Rex Archer and the Kansas City Health Department to provide all of the relevant information available.

The contact tracing mechanisms that the club has in place, including parking and ticket scanning data, as well as video record review, indicate that the individual who has presented positive and the individual’s party entered the stadium in compliance with mask mandates. This process allowed the team to identify the other guests sitting with this individual, the service staff with whom this individual may have come in contact with, as well as any other ticket holders near this person at the time of entry into the stadium. Within hours of being notified, the Chiefs were able to pinpoint the names of the other members of the party as well as detailed information about the path and location of entry, and this information was provided to the Health Department. The tracing capabilities at the stadium allow the extension of communication to learn more about the guest’s activity the days leading up to and after the game Thursday night.

The individual and the individual’s group were seated in the lower level of the stadium. By design, the stadium’s COVID protocol plan limited potential exposure to a single seating zone within the stadium. All staff with known interactions with the positive case were required to wear personal protective equipment (PPE), including a mask. Additionally, the protocols in place at the stadium require all attendees to be wearing masks inside the stadium.

Compliance with the protocols remains a key component to making this plan effective. We appreciate the professionalism and diligence of the Health Department and will continue to support its efforts in this matter and throughout the season.

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