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Community Update Related to COVID-19

| Category:
Announcement
To:
Faculty and Staff, All Campuses

The below message was shared with the entire Tufts community, including students, faculty, and staff.

 

To members of the Tufts community,


We are writing to follow up on previous messages sent to the Tufts community regarding the novel coronavirus, now referred to as COVID-19, to inform you of recent developments that may impact your current or upcoming travel, including travel you may be considering for spring break. For up-to-date-guidance for the Tufts community related to COVID-19, please consult the Office of Emergency Management website at any time.

 

Guidance for Travelers

The University’s emergency response team continues to monitor the circumstances surrounding COVID-19 along with local public-health partners in Medford, Somerville, Boston, and Grafton. No members of the Tufts community have been identified as having the coronavirus, and we continue to be informed that the risk to the Tufts community remains low. As of February 25, cases have been reported in 37 countries, including cases in the United States. Travel guidance has been issued by the CDC for China, Hong Kong, Iran, Italy, Japan, and South Korea, and several countries have imposed entry restrictions, quarantines, and isolation protocols.

As you plan for possible University-related travel or independent personal travel, please keep current travel guidance and restrictions in mind, and please also keep in mind that the spread of this virus is evolving rapidly, which means travel guidance and restrictions will likely evolve. Tufts strongly advises students, as well as faculty and staff, to avoid travel to affected areas and to monitor entry restrictions, quarantines, and isolation protocols for any country to which they are considering traveling. We also strongly encourage travelers to monitor U.S. restrictions, quarantines, and isolation protocols that may be in place upon their return. It is difficult to predict how current travel guidance and restrictions may change, particularly in Europe given the recent outbreak in Northern Italy. As cases continue to spread in Asia, similar protocols, advisories, and restrictions may also be implemented.

If you do choose to travel, it is important to follow all local directives, update the Tufts Travel Registry with your trip itinerary and dates, and monitor restrictions and advisories through the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), U.S. Department of State, and International SOS. Registering your travel with the Tufts Travel Registry gives you access to up-to-date information from International SOS and access to medical services while abroad.

 

Resources for Travelers

  • Download the International SOS app and sign up for alerts for your destination.
  • Monitor International SOS updates for your current location and research your destination in the ISOS Communication Portal prior to departing (Tufts Member number is 11BCPS000093).

 

Reminders for Prevention

As a reminder, to help prevent the spread of illness, including the flu and common cold:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, or use hand sanitizer.
  • Cover your cough. Keep germs from spreading by coughing into your sleeve, not your hand.
  • Avoid sharing drinks, food, and/or cigarettes or vaping products.
  • If you share a room or apartment with someone who is sick, try to stay at least 6 feet away to prevent exposure through coughing.

 

Key Contacts

  • For general health and safety questions related to travel, please contact Tufts Global Operations office at internationalsafety@tufts.edu or 1-617-627-3981.
  • If you experience an urgent issue (medical/security) while traveling internationally, please call International SOS at 1-215-942-8226.
  • If you are a student studying abroad and have any questions about your program, please contact Tufts Global Education at globaleducation@tufts.edu or 1-617-627-2000.

 

We will continue to monitor the situation and update the community as needed. Thank you for taking steps to travel safely.

 

Sincerely,

 

Richard Perito

Assistant Director, Office of Emergency Management

 

Dr. Margaret Higham

Medical Director, Health Service, AS&E

 

Mala Ghosh

Senior Director, Study Abroad and Global Education, AS&E

 

Claudia Jackson

Director, Global Operations and Risk Management and Insurance

 

Amy Kuhlik

Dean of Student Affairs, School of Medicine

 

Chris Rock

Campus EHS Manager, Cummings School