WWE Suspends Taping, Tests All Employees for Coronavirus After Developmental Talent Is Positive
Prior to the recent developments, WWE had been conducting temperature checks with talent and employees before tapings at the Performance Center
WWE has paused taping after a developmental talent tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), WWE's associate medical director, Dr. Jeffrey Dugas, said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE.
"A developmental talent, who was last onsite at WWE's training facility on Tuesday, June 9, has tested positive for COVID-19. Since that time, no other individuals that attended the facility have reported symptoms," Dugas said.
"However, out of an abundance of caution and to ensure the health and safety of the company's performers and staff, all talent, production crew and employees on site at the training and production facilities will be tested for COVID-19 immediately," the statement added.
Dugas said that after they receive the test results, "WWE plans to proceed with its normal television production schedule.”
Until now, WWE had only been conducting temperature checks with talent and employees before entering the Performance Center for television and pay-per-view tapings, according to CBS Sports.
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Although WWE stopped touring in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it continued on with taped shows, including WrestleMania 36, which was pre-taped in late March and took place without a live audience for the first time in its history.
The annual event, which aired on April 4 and 5, took place at the company’s Performance Center in Orlando, Florida, which is mostly used as a training facility for future prospects.
Paul Levesque, the company’s executive vice president of global talent strategy and development, spoke to PEOPLE on April 3 about the decision to hold WrestleMania amid the pandemic.
“There’s probably no greater time — at least in my memory, in my generation — where people need entertainment,” Levesque, better known by his ring name, “Triple H,” told PEOPLE. “They need that relief. They need a distraction and something to be entertained by.”
"We decided that giving people entertainment at this time, giving people an escape, giving them something that would give them some normalcy, was worth the challenge for us,” Levesque added.
As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. To help provide doctors and nurses on the front lines with life-saving medical resources, donate to Direct Relief here.