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Thursday, May 23, 2024
The Observer

University suspends travel to mainland China in light of coronavirus outbreak

In light of the rising concern around the country and the world regarding the respiratory illness caused by a strain of coronavirus, Notre Dame officials said in an email they have no reason to believe members of the Notre Dame community are at risk of acquiring the virus.

The officials that penned the email included the vice president for student affairs Erin Hoffman Harding, vice president for human resources Robert McQuade, vice president for internationalization Michael Pippenger and vice president for campus safety and university operations Mike Seamon.

While coronaviruses are a family of viruses which cause mild to moderate upper-respiratory tract illnesses, the recent strain of coronavirus which originated in Wuhan, China has risen as a cause of concern recently.

In order to ensure the health of students, faculty and staff, the email said the University is taking several proactive steps which are based on guidelines recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

All University-sponsored travel to mainland China for members of the campus community is prohibited until further notice, the email said.

Those returning from mainland China are also advised to limit contact with others and consult with University Health Services, the Notre Dame Wellness Center or a primary care provider if they present with fever or respiratory symptoms.

“Notre Dame values the many people of different nationalities and cultures who are cherished members of our community and, in keeping with the recommendations of the CDC and State Department, is taking these steps out of an abundance of caution,” the email said.

The University will continue to monitor the health risk of this strain of coronavirus and provide updates if recommendations change.

Some Chinese students and alumni have responded to the outbreak by raising money and gathering donations to send to Wuhan.