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Preparation and Prevention: What You Should Know About the Spread of Viruses

January, 30, 2020


In addition to monitoring the standard influenza virus, Employee Health and the Student Health Center are monitoring the global concern over the coronavirus – 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) – which was first detected in Wuhan City in the Hubei Province of China.

While SLU is not aware of any cases of coronavirus on our campus, in the city, or in the greater metro region, we are proactively sharing this information to raise awareness within our community. 

As of this message, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has assigned a low risk to the United States for the general population who are unlikely to be exposed to the virus. The CDC also notes that this is a serious public health threat and that it is still unclear how the situation in the United States will unfold at this time. 

Caring for Our Community 

This information is especially important for those in our community who have recently traveled to areas where transmission of this virus has been documented. The CDC is currently advising against non-essential travel to all of mainland China. 

We ask that the members of the SLU community:

  1. Remain mindful of the symptoms of the flu and coronavirus.
  2. Seek care and immediately notify the University if you have recently traveled to areas where the coronavirus is present and are experiencing symptoms.
  3. Continue to practice hygiene habits: wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, cover coughs and sneezes, avoid sharing food and utensils, resist touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands, stay home when sick, and avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  4. Get a flu shot. 

Seek Care 

As always, we recommend seeking care for the flu and other illnesses with your primary care provider or an acute care clinic. For those experiencing symptoms of the coronavirus (fever AND cough or shortness of breath) who have traveled to China within the past 14 days should contact Employee Health at 314-268-5499 or

Information for Travelers 

In light of the CDC precautions, SLU has decided to suspend all University-funded travel to China at this time. If you have booked travel to China, please work with your business manager and the travel office to change or cancel your travel plans. 

Additional Information 

The University also has launched a new webpage, where you’ll find FAQs about the coronavirus and other helpful information. This page will be updated as new information becomes available. Visit the page here:

The health and wellness of every member of our SLU community remain of utmost importance to the University. We recognize that students, faculty, and staff from China or with family in China may have growing concerns about the outbreak. International Services has reached out to offer care and ongoing support to our Chinese students and will continue to do so.

To reach Employee Health, call 314-268-5499 or email To reach the Student Health Center, call 314-977-2323. (A nurse is available on-call after hours.)

Previous Updates to the SLU Community