Heat to Open Vaccinated-Only Sections for Fans Starting on April 1

Jenna CiccotelliAnalyst IIMarch 24, 2021

A Miami Heat logo is shown before the start of an NBA basketball game between the Heat and the Washington Wizards, Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018, in Miami. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
Wilfredo Lee/Associated Press

The Miami Heat will be the first team to open a separate section in their stadium for fans who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, according to Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press.

The team will open two sections in the lower bowl beginning April 1, reserved for fans who can show proof of their CDC vaccination card and have been fully vaccinated for at least 14 days. In the section, masks will still be required, but groups will only be separated by one seat, per the report.

Miami has allowed fans since the end of January. The team has been using dogs trained to detect COVID-19 to screen fans before they enter AmericanAirlines Arena. 

While the Heat will be the first to open the vaccinated sections of the arena, other teams have similar plans in the works, per Reynolds. The NBA informed teams last week that sections for fully vaccinated fans would be permitted in accordance with local health and safety guidelines.