Valencia Basket extreme its anti-Covid protocol

Fernando San Emeterio and Leticia Romero, who have already overcome the disease, explain the way in which, from the club, they have been treated the return to the competition.

After organizing the extraordinary final phase of the Endesa League last year, Valencia Basket this year has followed a strict protocol in order to avoid Covid infections among its players and when acting when a positive has been confirmed among its ranks. The head of the Valencia Basket medical services, Dr. Ignacio Muñoz, explains that the experience of hosting this event showed that "maintaining the rigor that we had in the bubble we can work with some security" .


The professional squads of Valencia Basket are subjected to weekly PCR controls that are set by the regulations of the competitions they dispute. Although, as Dr. Ignacio Muñoz recalls, “we have spared no effort in protecting the health of our teams. We have strictly followed the protocols set by the government and the sports authorities, but we have made a great effort to even increase them with criteria that we thought were common sense. ”

When a member of the professional staff has a positive result in any of the control PCRs or in the test carried out after presenting symptoms compatible with COVID-19, the sporting activity of that team stops immediately and undergoes all the staff, coaching staff and personnel in close contact with the team to a back-up test. As explained by Dr. Sebastià, doctor of the women's first team and L'Alqueria del Basket, “following the protocol of the Spanish Basketball Federation, we repeat PCR after 48 hours to all the players. And as long as all the players are negative, they can be incorporated into training. ”

For positive cases that have to remain isolated at home, Dr. Sebastià explains that “ten days after testing positive, the PCR is repeated to check if the result has become negative. Otherwise, they wait a couple of days and repeat as many times as necessary until the result becomes negative. ”

Comprehensive control for returns

This negative result in the PCR implies that the disease has been overcome, but before resuming the practice of professional sports, an exhaustive control of the affected person's health and a gradual incorporation into training is necessary. Before being able to start working with the team, the player undergoes an electrocardiogram, blood tests and serologies, an echocardiogram and a stress test on consecutive days. As the prestigious cardiologist Dr. Jose Antonio Ferrero explains, “we have designed a protocol to detect possible post-COVID-19 complications. We use current preventive treatments to recover faster and we seek to locate if there is any of the three most important problems that this disease causes in recovery: cardiac involvement, pulmonary involvement or thrombotic involvement ”.

If the results of the first electrocardiogram do not advise it, after testing negative, the players can begin to work individually under the tutelage of the physical trainers. The person in charge of this task in the first women's team is Pau Alcácer, who points out that “together with Doctors Sebastià and Ferrero we offer a series of supplementation and parameters that we think will help mitigate the effects of the disease and help them recover. . That recovery goes little by little, in the gym and on the track and individually. Guiding us with the feedback that the player gives us, they progress until the moment comes when the situation allows them to gradually integrate into the team's work. First in parts and then whole sessions. ”

Fernando San Emeterio and Leticia Romero

Two of the players who have gone through this process and are now reincorporated to work with their teams, forward Fernando San Emeterio and base Leticia Romero, contribute the athlete's point of view throughout this process. San Emeterio recalls that “immediately from the club they were very attentive. They were continuously testing us to see if the positive was true. And my family too. They have tested negative all the time but they were being followed up as well. And they gave us all kinds of facilities from the doctors. ”

For her part, Leticia Romero pointed out that “what is done here I have not seen anywhere else and it gives us maximum peace of mind. They worry so much that on our part that we only have the concern of getting back to the level we need to be ”.

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