THE Games and Amusements Board (GAB) made it clear that coaches over 60 years old will be allowed to work with teams during the resumption of training as long as they complete the medical requirements.
In the implementing guidelines of the Joint Administrative Order of the Department of Health, Games and Amusements Board, and the Philippine Sports Commission, promoters of sports events are “discouraged” from allowing the participation of individuals, whether athletes, coaches and personnel who are 60 years old and above to be part of practices and training during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Also being discouraged are individuals aged below 21, individuals of any age with comorbidities or pre-existing illnesses, and women with high-risk pregnancy.
The promoter, according to the JAO, must provide alternative arrangements for such individuals so that their salaries will not be affected.
But GAB chairman Baham Mitra told SPIN.ph that with the coaches being an essential part of the team, they will be allowed to be part of the restart of training.
Coaches over 60 years old will have to submit a medical certificate and undergo a swab test in order to be cleared to join their respective teams in practice.
Multi-titled coaches Yeng Guiao of NLEX (61), Tim Cone of Barangay Ginebra (62), Norman Black of Meralco (62), and Leo Austria of San Miguel (62) are covered by the provision in the JAO.
PBA commissioner Willie Marcial also interpreted the JAO guidelines the same way as GAB.
“Sinasabi doon, ‘we discourage.’ Sa akin, basta may medical certificate ka na okay ka at negative ka, puwede ka. Hindi sinabing ‘we will not allow,’” said Marcial.
The PBA is set to resume practice soon but after all the players, coaches, and staff undergo swab testing, with the league set to impose strict health standards in the resumption of training.