NBA will continue precautions to prevent spread of infection

September 30, 1992|By Los Angeles Times

LOS ANGELES -- The NBA, with the possible spreading o diseases in mind, implemented what team physicians termed "updated infection control guidelines" during last February's All-Star Game weekend.

The new rules call for prompt treatment of any injury "where there is a significant chance of infection," meaning that games were sometimes stopped before a dead ball to remove or treat a player with a cut.

The guidelines also meant trainers and doctors should use gloves and other routine sanitary precautions where contact with blood is necessary, though some trainers, saying it was against reactive instincts, did not always use the rubber gloves during brief stops in play.

In more severe cases, players were removed from games by game officials and told to put on new jerseys or shorts if they had blood on the uniform, even if it was blood from another player.

Said NBA consultant Dr. David E. Rogers, vice chairman of the National Commission on AIDS, in reaffirming Tuesday that the steps are only precautions:

"The HIV-AIDS epidemic has been around for more than 12 years, and there is no evidence that HIV has ever been transmitted as a consequence of physical contact during an athletic competition of any kind."

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