PGA Tour to End Weekly COVID-19 Testing for Players in Late July

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVJune 28, 2021

SAN DIEGO, CA - JANUARY 29: PGA TOUR logo is seen during the second round of the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines South on January 29, 2021 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Ben Jared/PGA TOUR via Getty Images)
Ben Jared/PGA TOUR via Getty Images

The PGA Tour is planning to end its weekly COVID-19 testing program starting with the 3M Open, which tees off July 22.

ESPN's Bob Harig shared a portion of the memo from PGA Tour Senior Vice President Tyler Dennis:

"We are pleased to announce, after consultation with PGA Tour medical advisors, that due to the high rate of vaccination among all constituents on the PGA Tour, as well as other positively trending factors across the country, testing for COVID-19 will no longer be required as a condition of competition beginning with the 3M Open."

The PGA Tour said it will continue to have on-site testing available to those showing symptoms and that it "may still conduct periodic testing of all constituents."

As it prepared to restart play last June, the tour laid out its original testing protocols. Players and caddies were required to test negative at the site of a tournament in order to take part.

With the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine ongoing, the protocols were updated in April to allow a little more freedom to those who had been vaccinated, including a halt to routine testing.

Jon Rahm was forced to withdraw from the Memorial Tournament after the third round, when he led by six shots and appeared poised for a dominant victory.

The PGA Tour said he had been subject to contact-tracing after having close contact with a person carrying COVID-19. A test performed prior to the third round yielded a positive result, which was confirmed upon a second test.

According to Golf Digest's Tod Leonard, vaccinated individuals will no longer have to do contact-tracing after being around someone carrying the virus.