Q: How are you grouping campers to reflect the realities of COVID? How will camp define pods and cohorts?
Camp is already organized by smaller groups and larger groups, so this measure is relatively easy for us to define. Currently, the guidelines released by the state of NH says that we can group up to 50, and although that is good to know, we plan to keep our numbers much smaller in the first days of camp. As of right now, we will be very bunk-focused in the opening days of camp to keep our exposure risks much lower.
A pod = a bunk. This is the household unit. Campers and staff who live together will be considered a pod, able to interact together safely, share living quarters, eat together, share equipment, etc.
A cohort = an ayda (unit). During the opening phase of camp, it is likely that the larger cohort (ayda) wil be able to interact with non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPI) in place (masking, outdoors and distanced activities, extra sanitary measures, etc.) If after the opening phase of camp, we are able to relax our stricter bunk-focused approach, we will be thrilled to allow more interactions between the bunks of an ayda, allowing campers to mix and mingle more freely, yet with the proper protocols in place to keep everyone safe. We will wait to make these decisions based on the health of the community in the opening phase as well as guidance from our COVID Task Force.
Q: Can you explain non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPI) more? Why are they so important to keep campers and staff safe?
Non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) include, but are not limited to: pre-screening, daily screenings, hygiene and hand washing, cleanliness and disinfection, masking, physical distance, proper ventilation of indoor spaces, use of outdoor spaces, testing, and cohorting.
In numerous studies to date, including the American Camping Association’s CampCounts2020 report of 486 camps that operated in 2020, NPIs have shown that they reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19. The layering of multiple NPIs increases their effectiveness as well, and we expect that NPIs will be used throughout the summer, to varying degrees and with different groups, to continue to promote our community’s health in camp.
As we get closer to the summer, we will outline our exact NPI strategy to allow for everyone to best prepare for Kayitz ‘21.