As you head into the woods, remember we’re not yet out of the woods with COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic isn’t over. Although recent virus variants have generally shown less severe, they can still be a serious risk for Scouts and Scouters or their families — especially for those in high-risk groups. Group settings like at day camp or summer camp can allow for spread.

Monitor your health daily

If you or your Scout starts showing COVID-19 symptoms before camp, stay home. Even if your symptoms are mild or you think it might just be allergies, if you go to camp and the virus spreads, you don’t know how it’ll affect others. A Scout is courteous and kind. An illness outbreak could result in Scouts being forced to go home early and have already led to camp closings.

Check before you go

The BSA remains committed to keeping Scouts and Scouters safe. That requires your help, too. Most BSA camps will use some form of the BSA Pre-Event Medical Screening Checklist that their council health supervisor customized for camp.

Do not participate if you have any of the following symptoms in the past 24 hours:

  • Fever (100.4°F or greater)
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • New cough

Do not participate if you or anyone you live with has recently tested positive for COVID-19 or does not have test results back.

Do not attend any activity/meeting/event if you, anyone you live with or anyone you have recently been around feel unwell.  If you are ill, get clearance from your health-care provider before returning to an activity or event.

Make sure to report

If there is a COVID-19 exposure or incident, it must be reported to your council immediately. It’s not just the responsibility of your council or camp to report such incidents; it applies to district and unit leaders as well.

Details that should be shared include:

  • Individuals who tested positive for COVID-19.
  • A roster for all participants in attendance.
  • Document how you were notified of the COVID-19-positive individual.
  • Document how you handled the response of exposure.
  • Provide a detailed description of the event.
  • Provide details on COVID-19 mitigation strategies that were in place.

The BSA isn’t requiring COVID-19 vaccination to participate in in-person activities or camp. However, it’s recommended that everyone who is eligible receive one and stay up to date with boosters in consultation with your health-care provider.

Some states, councils and camps will require all participants to be up to date with the COVID-19 vaccine and/or testing prior to attending events.

If we each do our part in continuing to stay safe, we can all have an enjoyable summer.

About Michael Freeman 391 Articles
Michael Freeman, an Eagle Scout, is an associate editor of Scout Life and Scouting magazines.