The last few weeks have been quite challenging for our industry. All of us are trying to understand the situation as best that we can and to make the appropriate decisions. Having said that, Teneo’s key role is to be a trusted advisor to our stakeholders. For this reason, we have put together this COVID-19 resource guide that can help educate all of us on the factors and facts surrounding the novel coronavirus.
Last week, I sent the below information to all of our clients. I also want to share it with you and let you know that Teneo is with you through these difficult times.
What the Experts are Saying
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and United States Travel Association say domestic travel is still safe amid coronavirus: During a joint news conference, officials with five U.S. travel and commercial organizations addressed concerns surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, saying that domestic travel remains safe and there is no need to cancel leisure or business travel, writes Hotel News Now’s Bryan Wroten. “What we’re telling our members—and that’s critical—is the same advice we’re following ourselves: Be prudent, be prepared, and don’t overreact,” said Thomas Donohue, CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “We should be guided by the facts and the advice from medical experts and the federal, state and local officials.”
Jenn Glynn, CIS, CITP, President of the Society for Incentive Travel Excellence (SITE), the only Business Events association dedicated exclusively to the global incentive travel industry wrote to members of the association “Regrettably, some media sources have published false or misleading data relative to COVID-19, giving rise to fear and panic and leading to the cancellation of meetings, incentive travel experiences, and events in locations where the risk of transmission of the virus is negligible or zero. SITE is uncompromisingly committed to ensuring the health, wellbeing, and safety of all attendees at our events. We are in contact with the relevant global and national health authorities and monitoring the evolving situation with respect to COVID-19 in Switzerland and the U.S. on a daily basis. To date we have received no information that would cause us to cancel or postpone either ISE or ISA.”
- Harvard Medical School states it’s weaker than the flu.
- There are 330,000,000 people living in the United States and roughly 800 cases reported as of March 9, 2020. (Sources: CDC Website and LiveScience Magazine)
- Be calm and communicate responsibly. “Containing the spread of unnecessary panic is as important as stopping the virus itself,” said Gloria Guevara, president and CEO, World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC).
What Guidance and Support can you Provide your Attendees?
- If you’re not feeling well, stay home & consult a doctor.
- Put sanitizing hand rub dispensers in prominent places around the venue and encourage attendees to use it regularly.
- Educate yourself and your attendees with information from reliable sources.
- Ensure and verify information and communication channels in advance with key partners such as public health and health care authorities.
- Make local healthcare officials available at your event venue to communicate with your attendees.
What Are The Facts?
- People of all ages can be infected, however, older people and people with pre-existing conditions appear to be more vulnerable to becoming severely ill with the virus.
- For most of the American public, who are unlikely to be exposed to this virus at this time, the immediate health risk from COVID-19 is considered low.
- Starbucks has now reopened 85% of its stores in China.
- In China and South Korea, the number of new cases is slowing down dramatically.