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Disney Parks Medical Officer says phased openings, face masks and virtual queues likely

Just after the announcement that Shanghai Disney Resort will reopen in phases on May 11, the Chief Medical Officer for Disney Parks, Dr. Pamela Hymel, has shared insight on possible reopening procedures for the rest of the parks.

disney parks

In a letter posted to the Disney Parks Blog, Dr. Hymel shares that Disney is evaluating many new and enhanced safety measures to keep guests safe while working at and visiting Disney Resorts and Disney stores.

Some of these measures include:

  • Phased reopening – This could include a gradual reopening and/or partial reopening of certain locations, like the opening of dining and retail locations before opening the theme parks.
  • Physical distancing and capacity measures – This will likely include implementing guest capacity measures to comply with state and federal guidelines. Technological support is also being considered, like the Play Disney Parks app and virtual queues at Disneyland and Walt Disney World.
  • Cleanliness and sanitization – Disney is planning increased cleaning and disinfection, deciding where that should take place (like in high-traffic areas), and what cleaning products and processes will be used.
  • Screening and prevention support – Disney will follow guidelines set by the government and medical community related to enhanced screening procedures and prevention measures, including those related to personal protective equipment (PPE), like face coverings and masks. Some measures like adding hand sanitizers and handwashing stations across the parks have already been implemented.
  • Cast training – Cast members will receive new training and reinforcement as the parks get closer to opening.

In addition to these possible procedures, Dr. Hymel has also been working with the US Travel Association on guidelines that the travel industry can use to help demonstrate that safety is of great importance to travelers. You can read these guidelines here.

It is important to keep in mind that these possible procedures can change alongside the constantly-changing global health situation. Dr. Hymel says that more information will be shared as the parks move toward reopening.


Stay tuned for more updates as we await more details on the eventual reopening of the Disney Parks.

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