Covid-19 impact: US Air Force extends suspension of fitness testing

26 May 2020 (Last Updated May 26th, 2020 11:32)

US Air Force has extended the suspension of all official fitness testing until 1 October in a bid to reduce the risks of Covid-19 transmission.

Covid-19 impact: US Air Force extends suspension of fitness testing
3D medical animation still shot showing the structure of a coronavirus. Credit: https://www.scientificanimations.com.

The US Air Force (USAF) has extended the suspension of all official fitness testing until 1 October in a bid to reduce the risks of Covid-19 transmission.

Halted in March due to coronavirus outbreak, fitness testing for the USAF was set to resume on 1 June.

In an internal memo, USAF deputy chief of staff for manpower, personnel and services lieutenant general Brian Kelly said: “Airmen remain our top priority, and we will ensure their health and safety as we maintain our force readiness posture.

“When testing resumes, the airforce will take a systematic approach to reintegrating official physical fitness assessments.

“All policies and procedures should reinforce physical distancing, use of personal protective equipment, airmen health and personal hygiene, and cleaning, sanitising and disinfecting workspaces and common areas.”

Following the latest change, commanders are expected to resume fitness assessment of airmen on 1 October, subject to local health conditions and other restrictions.

However, the commanders may choose to further delay the assessment if certain restrictions continue to remain in place.

The US is one of the worst affected countries by the Covid-19 pandemic. As of 26 May, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases has increased to 1.66 million. The death toll has also surged to 98,223.

The USAF has taken a series of steps to support Covid-19 response efforts.

Earlier this month, the military unit’s official auxiliary Civil Air Patrol (CAP) started assisting response efforts in Michigan.