Walt Disney World increases Corona Virus prevention measures as World Health Organization characterizes COVID-19 as a pandemic

Mar 11, 2020 in "The Walt Disney Company"

Hand-sanitizers at Walt Disney World
Posted: Wednesday March 11, 2020 2:37pm ET by WDWMAGIC Staff

The World Health Organization (WHO) has made the assessment that COVID-19 can now be characterized as a pandemic.

In the past two weeks, the number of cases of COVID-19 outside China has increased 13-fold, and the number of affected countries has tripled. There are now more than 118,000 cases in 114 countries, and 4,291 people have lost their lives. 

At the theme parks today, portable hand-washing stations have been setup in addition to the hand sanitizer stations that have been in place for the last few weeks.

New signage is also in place around the parks giving public health recommendations, including frequent hand washing, covering mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, and to seek medical attention if experiencing flu-like symptoms.

Disney has yet to make any operational changes due to COVID-19 at Walt Disney World, but has taken measures at other parks around the world. In Disneyland Paris, meet and greets with face-characters have been eliminated, and parks have been closed in Asia.

Leaders at Walt Disney World are monitoring the situation closely and have in-place a dedicated team to handle the situation as needed. Disney released this statement from Disney Parks Chief Medical Officer Dr. Pamela Hymel

As you may know from the news, COVID-19, commonly known as novel coronavirus 2019, has become a more widespread concern. Our thoughts are with those affected and we want to share more information with you about our efforts to help keep our guests, cast members, and communities safe and healthy.
We are carefully monitoring the evolving coronavirus situation and are in regular contact with health agencies for information and guidance. Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort are open and welcoming guests and we continue to implement preventive measures in line with the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as state and local health agencies. For example, we have added additional hand sanitizers throughout the park, increased the frequency of cleaning and disinfection in high guest contact areas, and are providing information about good hygiene practices and illness prevention to our guests and cast members.
Walt Disney World, Disneyland and all of our parks and resorts around the world have high standards of cleanliness and health and safety protocols in place, such as:
  • Training for cast members, with ongoing reinforcement on a regular basis
  • Defined cycles for frequent cleaning and disinfection of targeted areas
  • Easy access to handwashing facilities and hand sanitizers Quick response to spills, trash and other situations
  • End of day sanitation procedures for restroom, kitchen, and other facilities
  • Frequent cleaning and “wash down” of outdoor locations, including walkways and queues

Additionally, a list of First Aid and hand sanitizer locations is available in the Walt Disney World/My Disney Experience and Disneyland apps.

The CDC recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses like coronavirus/COVID-19, such as staying home when sick, washing hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, following proper respiratory cough etiquette, avoiding close contact with people who are sick and avoiding touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. We continue to communicate about these recommendations, as well as other important health information, to our cast.

The CDC provides more detailed coronavirus information on its website and your personal physician is a valuable resource for specific medical questions you may have. As always, our focus is on the health and well-being of our cast members, guests and the larger community, and we look forward to welcoming you at our parks very soon. If you have any questions about visiting Walt Disney World Resort or Disneyland Resort, or about our response to coronavirus, you can learn more on the Walt Disney World, Disneyland, or Disney Cruise Line websites, or call 407-WDisney. Thank you, Pamela Hymel MD Chief Medical Officer Disney Parks, Experiences and Products

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Lilofan51 minutes ago

Colombia where I traveled to back in the day in at Level 4 status for Covid in terms of traveling there. The crazy part is that the country is open to tourism with no covid test being given to people flying into the country as of Aug 2021. Some Colombians also have taken full advantage of "vaccine tourism " flying into Ft Lauderdale and Miami to get the coveted covid shots. A favorite place Colombians like to vacation and also to visit family is in Florida.

EpcoTim3 hours ago

10's of millions? Where does that number come from? How fast is "lickety split" and where does that timeline come from?

MisterPenguin3 hours ago

Yes, new vaccines can now be made lickety split. Faster than getting everyone exposed to the new variant and experience tens of millions of deaths in the process.

Timmay3 hours ago

Me and my immune system aren’t always on speaking terms. I don’t know if I can trust that clown or not.

EpcoTim3 hours ago

But what happens if the new variants become vaccine-resistant? Can new vaccines be generated at an equal pace to the mutations? Mu could be the first test of this and since it’s only really prevalent in Columbia there really isn’t a data set to rely on considering Columbia has less than 40% vaccinated. The real story will come as it spreads to more vaccinated nations. Good news is that it appears to be less contagious than delta so far.

Disney Experience3 hours ago

Today’s meeting only looked at data regarding the Pfizer vaccine not Moderna. So their recommendation is only in regards to Pfizer, not Moderna nor J&J. It was planned for Moderna data to be looked at not too much later, Moderna’s case for booster is weaker than Pfizer's. Ie Moderna current results are better than Pfizer so booster is less needed. Moderna booster study was a 50mcg vs Moderna standard 100mcg, and Pfizer's 30mcg

DisneyFan324 hours ago


MisterPenguin4 hours ago

It's just another excuse. Just like "it's only 'emergency use' and not 'fully authorized." The goal posts keep changing. Their argument is that they believe in the science of immunity. But after experiencing an invading virus that was damaging their organs, they want to trust that the 'natural immunity' is enough, and not boost it with a vaccine that doesn't damage their organs. But in the end, the main argument against just relying on 'natural immunity' is this: If not now, there will come a time we all will need boosters. Immunity, whether natural or vaccine-induced will wane over time. This is especially true as more variants evolve and are more prone to 'escape' the immunity that came from the vaccine or from being infected with the Alpha Variant of COVID. What's going to happen when after Mu, comes the variants Nu, Xi, Omicron, Pi? Are this vaccine hesitant going to just roll the dice with Sigma Variant, and thus, keep the virus 'alive' and mutating? Are they so vaccine-adverse that they'll purposely expose themselves to the Tau Variant to claim updated 'natural immunity' to avoid the vaccine? They're going to wind up dead and be accessories to the death of others.

helenabear4 hours ago

But if the kid had covid already then what do you say? Not here to judge either way tbh. I'd vaccinate my kid no matter what as I know chances of myocarditis are low and it's mild and temporary. Not a huge risk to me. But I can appreciate a parent's legit worry.

sullyinMT5 hours ago

I’m a little (ok, a lot) more forgiving of parents. It’s tough to feel like you could be failing your children. Those parents deserve to know the facts of MISC, though, and the relative risk of vaccination vs covid infection in their child(ren).

lazyboy97o5 hours ago

They also clearly don’t understand how vaccines work as they usually follow up with advice on things to take to “boost” the immune system, just not something actually designed and shown to “boost” the immune system.

helenabear5 hours ago

I know some parents who are worried their kids will develop myocarditis or something like that. Personally, it's all fears to me and we need to help them get over it.

Disney Analyst5 hours ago

I can't stand the new talking point. "I trust my immune system". It's such a stupid thing to say, and it shows they truly lack any understanding on how the immune system actually works.

helenabear6 hours ago

Yes. Trials are still ongoing for this (last I read last week). Same for Pfizer-BioNTech