by Elise Schoening | March 05, 2020
As the coronavirus outbreak spreads, meeting planners across the world are grappling with whether or not to cancel or postpone their event. Some shows, such as EXHIBITORLIVE in Las Vegas and South by Southwest in Austin, are scheduled to go on, while other companies, such as Google, Facebook and Concur, have canceled events. As many event organizers are looking to an established authority for informed, official guidelines, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has just issued interim guidance about mass gatherings or large community events planned in the United States.

It's important to note that the CDC has not advised against travel or large meetings. What is absolutely essential, however, is that organizers are prepared for contingencies with emergency preparedness plans. "Depending on the severity of the outbreak, public health officials may recommend community actions designed to limit exposure to COVID-19," the CDC has advised. "Officials may ask you to modify, postpone or cancel large events for the safety and well-being of your event staff, participants and the community."

With that, the CDC has provided recommended actions on everything that should be done before, during and after an event, to prevent the spread of the virus and ensure the safety of attendees. "The details of your emergency operations plan should be based on the size and duration of your events, demographics of the participants, complexity of your event operations, and type of on-site services and activities your event may offer," reads the guidance, which will be updated as more about the virus is learned. 

Read the full story on NorthstarMeetingsGroup.com for step-by-step tips on what to do before, during and after and event to prevent and manage the spread of coronavirus.