Guidance on DPP 2021 in Pittsburgh
by Michael Brown
To DPP membership:
This is an update from DPP leadership on the status of DPP 2021 in Pittsburgh at the David Lawrence Convention Center DLCC. As of now (4 weeks from the meeting week, and one week before registration deadline), our plan remains to move forward with both a live (in person) component and a virtual component. We are following guidance from the APS COVID task force and their public health consulting company called Cardno ChemRisk. I would like to provide members information as they decide whether to attend DPP 2021 in-person or remotely. We are making every effort to make in-person attendance at DPP 2021 safe, and we encourage you to attend if you are able and comfortable doing so. There are several considerations for attending in person.
First, your colleagues in DPP are likely to be among the most conscientious group to spend five days with. Colleges across the country are now doing in-person instruction with masked, vaccinated students who live and eat together with low transmission. Second, as of now, we know that several colleagues will not be attending in person. Office of Science employees (PPPL, ORNL, etc.) are unable to attend in person but employees from other labs (NNSA-based, such as LANL and LLNL) will send a contingent. Most universities and companies will be able to attend in person. Finally, we in DPP leadership completely respect your choice/necessity of how you wish to attend. We will strive to make the remote component as viable as possible.
In addition, we will cancel the Companions Breakfast, and the Children’s Room this year. There are too many risks and variables to having these events this year. We will resume them in 2022.
Vaccination Requirement: All registered attendees, visitors, and personnel are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by a World Health Organization approved vaccine. We will have an online method of vaccination verification prior to leaving for the conference. There will also be a phone app to check in each day before entering the conference hall.
Masking Requirement: All registered attendees, visitors, and convention center personnel are required to remain masked while indoors. Masking will be enforced.
Testing: We will be requiring a negative COVID PCR test result within the 72 hours (three days) prior to arrival at the Convention Center. Results will be uploaded by attendees. There are COVID-19 testing facilities near the DLCC. Note that attendees that test positive at the meeting will be required to quarantine.
Banquet: Our plan is to go forward with an in-person banquet. There will be reduced seating at each table, more space between tables, and plated serving.
The DLCC in Pittsburgh is a state-of-the-art facility with hospital-grade HVAC, and a very engaged staff. We will make every effort to make the in-person component of DPP 2021 as safe as possible. We ask that attendees comply with rules established by DPP and DLCC