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Coronavirus: No Cases on Campus, Officials Monitoring Situation

People wearing masks on a train in China

January 30, 2020

With the publicity and ongoing issues related to the novel coronavirus 2019-nCoV, we want to provide information to all our students, faculty and staff. This strain of coronavirus causes a pneumonia-like illness with cough and shortness of breath in addition to fever and general malaise. The first diagnosis was in Wuhan, China, and people with travel connections to Wuhan have been diagnosed in several other countries, including the United States.

We have no reason at this time to believe anyone on our campus is infected with the illness. The university is nevertheless closely monitoring the situation and will update the community on new developments as appropriate. The university has a preparedness plan, and key stakeholders are already engaged in implementing the plan. The best source of information on the novel coronavirus is the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. We urge you to check the CDC website for the most up-to-date developments.

What are the symptoms?
They can be similar to the flu or cold: fever, cough or shortness of breath. Persons with compromised immune systems or lung issues have the highest risk.

Should I be tested?
If you have traveled in or through known affected areas in the past 14 days and have any of the above symptoms, you should contact your provider for further instructions on possible testing.

How can I avoid getting sick?
Follow the standard best practices for preventing the spread of illness:

  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds to avoid spreading any virus to others, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Cover coughs and sneezes in your elbow or sleeve
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Stay at home and avoid public places and travel, when possible

Again, we have no reason at this time to believe anyone on our campus is infected with the novel coronavirus and will update you as appropriate. Providing emotional support to our students that may have friends or relatives in other countries is also key to our campus support.

If you have health questions or want to discuss the novel coronavirus, please reach out to the Student Health Center or your medical provider. If you are feeling anxious or in need of additional support during this time, please reach out to the UNC Counseling Center. Students who need assistance during difficult circumstances that may include medical, mental health, personal or family crisis, illness or injury, should contact Student Outreach and SupportPlease see important contact information listed below.

Our community’s health and safety is our utmost concern. We encourage you to inform yourself about the novel coronavirus and take the necessary precautions to help keep our campus safe and healthy.

Sincerely,

Gardiner "Tuck" Tucker, Dean of Students

Cindy Vetter, Director of Student Business & Health Services

Important Contact Information

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