As you are likely aware, on Tuesday, February 25th, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) gave a press conference updating the country on the current status of the coronavirus (COVID-19), and what steps should be taken moving forward. I want to share with you this OUSD link found here for additional information and updates.
As the CDC emphasized, there is not currently a coronavirus pandemic in the United States. A pandemic occurs when a disease is spreading from a variety of sources across a large region, and the number of cases across the US is still small. However, given how quickly the global situation is evolving, we are monitoring new developments and will continue to reevaluate our steps and actions daily.
In the meantime, the most effective way to stay healthy and minimize the spread of infectious disease is to follow basic health best practices like:
- Enforcing great hygiene, like washing hands thoroughly and covering up coughs/sneezes
- Asking all faculty, staff, and students who are feeling ill to stay home until they recover.
Do know that we are thinking about any next steps in our procedures and planning should the situation change. It is important to remember that handling the spread of a serious contagion like the coronavirus is primarily a task for public health agencies. Any directives from the World Health Organization, CDC, or local governmental organizations should be followed.
In times like this, we are particularly grateful for the strength and togetherness of this community. Please continue to look for further communications from us on this matter.