A handful of NBA teams are in the process of receiving permission from local government officials to test players and staff for coronavirus, even if they are asymptomatic, ESPN reported Friday.
The news comes as players have started to return to team facilities in advance of what could be the resumption of the 2019-20 season. The Cleveland Cavaliers and Portland Trail Blazers both opened their facilities for players Thursday.
According to the report, the Orlando Magic have received permission from the Orange County (Fla.) Department of Health to test asymptomatic staff, according to the report. In addition, the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers are expected to be allowed to administer coronavirus tests to players and staff that attend workouts.
Teams only will conduct coronavirus testing for anybody asymptomatic if there is a vibrant testing program in their particular area for people at risk, such as health care workers.
Initially, it was expected that asymptomatic individuals at NBA facilities would not be allowed to get testing. The league was reportedly hesitant to test people not showing coronavirus symptoms because of the perception that the league was using tests that could otherwise go to people in the community.
Other protocols will be in place at practice facilities such as temperature checks.
—Field Level Media