Health & Safety Protocols
We are looking forward to seeing you in San José, Costa Rica this July, but we are aware that we are in a new era of attending in-person conferences during COVID. We want everyone to be able to make the decision that best fits their circumstances and encourage all to prioritize their physical and mental health. We are thus happy to be able to provide virtual participation for those that feel more comfortable enjoying the presentations from home. We are, however, also excited to be able to provide a COVID-safe environment to all of those joining us in person. We are carefully monitoring COVID conditions and we are glad to report that recent meetings that have implemented policies in line with those that we are following had engaging, productive conferences with no COVID-related issues.
Please see below the ABS2022 COVID-safety measures:
1. Up to date and complete COVID vaccination is required for attendance. Per CDC guidelines, complete vaccination means that a person has received all recommended vaccines & boosters that they are eligible for and are available in their home country (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/fully-vaccinated.html). All COVID vaccines approved by the government of the home country of the participants will be accepted. Very few allowable exceptions will be considered for approval. Anyone granted an exception will be required to submit a negative test taken within 48 hours before the conference. All registrants will be expected to provide vaccination documentation when checking in at the meeting. Applications for exceptions must be requested prior to the meeting.
2. Masking will be required at the conference. Based on COVID-infection rates just prior to the conference, consideration will be given to possible exceptions in a few circumstances such as vaccinated speakers who may be allowed to lower their masks while presenting if the room allows them to distance themselves from the audience. Important considerations to make such decision will also include specific room air flow, concerns about the ability to understand masked speakers, and accessibility for hearing-impaired attendees.
3. Brief unmasking will be allowed for eating within areas designated for food consumption. To minimize potential transmission, areas where food is allowed or provided will be well-ventilated. In addition, the venue is surrounded by green areas where people could take their food to space out more and enjoy eating outside.
4. Social distancing will be encouraged and seating in the rooms will be spaced out to maximize distance between people in the audience. Similarly, when possible, measures to increase room ventilation will be taken.
5. We understand that travel planning is particularly challenging with a moving landscape due to COVID infection rates and the evolution of new variants. With this in mind, this year we have extended our cancellation policy as close as possible to the dates of the meeting. Conference participants will be allowed to cancel at a minimal cost ($25 USD administrative fee) when the request is submitted before July 1st, 2022. More details about the conference cancelation policy can be found here: https://www.animalbehaviorsociety.org/2022/registration-cancellation.phpAdditional information about COVID and traveling to Costa Rican can be found here: https://www.animalbehaviorsociety.org/2022/faq.php