Ohio University

Ohio University announces temporary travel restrictions to China in response to international coronavirus outbreak

Published: January 31, 2020 Author: Staff reports

Travel guidance from the CDC and DOS prompts immediate measures to restrict University-sponsored travel to China

In accordance with guidance from the Department of State (DOS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Ohio University has temporarily restricted University-sponsored travel to the country of China for all faculty, staff and students — effective immediately until further notice — due to the international viral outbreak of 2019 Novel Coronavirus. An exception process is currently being evaluated and will be put into place soon.

For personal travel, we strongly advise all students, faculty and staff to follow travel alerts from the CDC and DOS.

While the spread of the virus within the United States is still considered to be low risk, the CDC and the DOS have issued new travel guidance regarding China, and out of an abundance of caution, Ohio University has implemented these new restrictions on travel to proactively protect the health and well-being of our community.

On Tuesday, the University issued a communication to all students, faculty and staff to provide an informational update about human coronavirus, as well as the CDC guidance, below, to help prevent the spread of this and all other respiratory viruses.

We continue to ask all members of our campus community to employ preventive measures that will help curtail the spread of all respiratory viruses, including:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

There is no vaccine for any human coronavirus. The CDC reports that although carriers with no symptoms can be transmitters, human coronaviruses are most commonly spread by an infected person coughing and sneezing, close personal contact like touching or shaking hands, touching a surface with a virus on it, followed by touching the mouth, nose or eyes before washing hands, or in rare cases, fecal contamination.

We will continue to monitor this quickly evolving situation and provide updates as appropriate. For more information about human coronavirus, prevention, and other health alerts, visit OHIO’s health alerts page, travelers health tips, and general health and safety information for University travelers. Additionally, students, faculty, staff, and visiting scholars are encouraged to visit the CDC website at https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices for Travel Notices and Updates.