(3-10-20) Two Ohio universities have made some announcements concerning the coronavirus situation.

Note – Tweet below was posted after this story was posted –

Ohio State University

We are suspending face-to-face instruction in lectures, discussion sections, seminars and other similar classroom settings and moving to virtual instruction, effective immediately and through at least Monday, March 30

University of Dayton –

  • We will make decisions about athletic team travel on a case-by-case basis.

The above could have some impact with the future of the NCAA Basketball tournament. The Road to the Final Four® stops in Dayton at UD Arena on March 17-18, 2020, just one week away.

UD Flyers mens basketball has the opportunity to be a #1 seed, but will school officials let them play.

Two sides to every story

Your thoughts to many concerns, not enough concerns? More local compliance is needed in the Statetline area? Overblown crisis. Need to be concerned, will it be widespread? Is enough or to much much being done to contral the virus.

The two complete statements from both schools are listed below.

From Ohio State –

The Ohio State University announced new information for students, faculty and staff in response to the international viral outbreak of 2019 Coronavirus (COVID-19).

The university launched a website with information about the coronavirus as well as an email account where general questions about the coronavirus can be directed: coronavirus@osumc.edu

President Michael V. Drake issued a new university-wide letter on Monday that updates university guidelines. The details are as follows:

Dear Members of the Ohio State Community

The university has been monitoring closely the coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19) and providing regular updates to you as the situation evolves. I have convened a task force of senior leadership and subject matter experts who are meeting around the clock and are focused on our university’s preparations and response.

We continue to align our recommendations with and follow guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization and other city, state and federal agencies.

While there are no campus-associated cases of COVID-19, we know that there are at least three confirmed cases in the state of Ohio, and we expect that there will be more. We are being proactive in an effort to prevent illness and continue the important work of the university. I understand that our policy guidelines will cause measurable disruption, but the risk of not acting outweighs the inconvenience of these temporary measures. The safety of our campus community is always our top priority. Your cooperation and collaboration will help to ensure an appropriate response across our institution to this rapidly changing matter. Thank you for that.

One of the best ways to prevent the spread of viral illness is to minimize the circumstances in which individuals may interact and transmit disease.

Below are a number of updates related to classes, work arrangements, travel and campus events that will allow us to continue the education of our students while protecting our community.

Guidance for faculty and students regarding classroom teaching 

  • We are suspending face-to-face instruction in lectures, discussion sections, seminars and other similar classroom settings and moving to virtual instruction, effective immediately and through at least Monday, March 30. We are evaluating classroom experiences such as laboratory and performance classes, and the university will provide specific guidance this week. We will reevaluate these guidelines on an ongoing basis and share updates or modifications as more information becomes available.
  • While completing classes virtually, students may choose to return to their permanent place of residence or return to campus, where appropriate social distancing and enhanced preventative public health and hygiene measures will be actively encouraged.
  • We urge all students to make the choice that is best for their own personal situations.

Telecommuting opportunities for faculty and staff 

  • The university is also preparing plans for telecommuting opportunities, where appropriate, for faculty and staff during this time. Managers are expected to be flexible in allowing those employees who are able to do so to work from home. More information about telecommuting will be available from Human Resources in the coming days. The Wexner Medical Center will communicate with clinical faculty and employees regarding this option.

Human Resources guidance for managers and supervisors 

  • Information about COVID-19 reporting, employee-leave management and associated workplace issues will be available from Human Resources in the coming days.

Travel 

  • Effective immediately and until further notice, all university-sponsored international travel is suspended. This includes new travel as well as any currently booked trips between now and April 20. We will reevaluate these guidelines and share updates as more information becomes available.
  • The previously announced restrictions of university-sponsored travel to China, Italy, Iran and South Korea, which currently are under Level 3 warnings from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, remain in effect through at least April 20. Personal travel to these countries should be reported to: travelreporting@osumc.edu. Additional information about how to report travel is available on the university’s coronavirus website: https://wexnermedical.osu.edu/features/coronavirus.
  • University-sponsored domestic air travel will be limited to business essential travel and will be approved on an as-needed basis. A process for requesting and approval of domestic travel will be shared shortly. This includes new travel as well as any currently booked trips between now and April 20. We will reevaluate these guidelines and share updates as more information becomes available.
  • The university will work on an individual basis with students who are currently on university-sponsored international or domestic travel and need assistance with returning early. For international travel, contact the Office of International Affairs Risk Management at 614-292-6677. For domestic travel, email studentlife@osu.edu.
  • Travelers returning from Level 3 warning countries are required to observe a 14-day period of self-quarantine and monitoring. During this period, you are not permitted to come to work, attend class or participate in any other campus or community activities. The university does not have the capacity to provide self-quarantine locations on campus for students. Students needing to self-quarantine will be required to return to their permanent home residences or self-quarantine in their off-campus apartments. Students who reside in university housing and are unable to return to a home residence should contact University Housing in the Office of Student Life at housing@osu.edu.

Events 

  • No new, non-essential events will be scheduled on campus through April 20.
  • We encourage event organizers for scheduled non-essential events occurring on campus between now and April 20 to immediately evaluate whether these events should continue in person.
  • We will continue to evaluate events and will share plans prior to April 20 to either end the restrictions early or, if needed, extend them.

As mentioned, the situation is evolving daily. All guidelines are subject to change as emerging events warrant. I appreciate your understanding and continued cooperation during these changing times. I also want to express my thanks to the individuals and teams who have worked many hours to implement plans that will help keep our community safe.

We will continue to monitor regularly and make adjustments as needed with the well-being of our university community top of mind. Please check our website for updates and other information. Questions can be addressed to coronavirus@osumc.edu.

Thank you for all of your efforts to promote a safe and healthy campus community at The Ohio State University.

Sincerely, 

Michael V. Drake, MD 

President 

University of Dayton

The University is committed to protecting the health and safety of our campus community, and often monitors situations that could affect its health and safety. UD has established this webpage for important messages to the community and links to resources. The situation surrounding COVID-19 nationally and globally is rapidly evolving, so we encourage you to check here, as well as the websites for the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization, for updates. We are in contact with the Ohio Department of Higher Education, the Ohio Department of Health, and Public Health – Dayton & Montgomery County, and we continue to be alert for information from CDC for the most current updates and guidance.

March 9, 2020
Important travel announcements and campus information

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is evolving daily around the world and in the U.S., and the University is working to make decisions rapidly to protect individuals and to reduce risk to the public health. We are committed to protecting the health and safety of our faculty, staff and students.

We are sharing key decisions and other important information in this update and have established a new webpage dedicated to COVID-19 for messages to the community and links to resources. Find it at go.udayton.edu/coronavirus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has announced the global spread of the virus makes it almost certain the U.S. will experience a significant outbreak, although the scope is as yet undetermined. Earlier today, it was announced there are three confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, and Gov. Mike DeWine declared a state of emergency.

A University working group with representatives from key units across campus is meeting several times a week to coordinate UD’s short-term response and refine long-term and business continuity plans. We will update UD’s COVID-19 website as conditions change and also notify campus of significant developments.

We are monitoring the situation closely and will provide updates accordingly. Our highly residential campus environment and our responsibility to the larger issue of public health require us to be proactive, rather than reactive, in making decisions that affect the well-being of our community.

Below are updates on various topics related to COVID-19:

International and domestic travel guidance

For students

  • All University-sponsored international and domestic spring break programs are cancelled.
  • All summer education abroad programs are cancelled.
  • All non-essential University-sponsored student travel within the U.S. is cancelled until further notice.
  • We will make decisions about athletic team travel on a case-by-case basis.
  • As the global situation is very dynamic, we strongly recommend students reconsider ANY PERSONAL travel plans to other countries and U.S. territories over spring break.
  • The situation in the United States is changing every day, with an increase in areas reporting confirmed cases. If students are traveling within the U.S., they should check CDC guidance and current conditions where they are traveling.
  • It is important to check CDC guidance and local authorities’ information often.  Because the COVID-19 situation is evolving rapidly, affected areas could issue new travel restrictions or guidance at any time and without prior notice, which could affect or interrupt your travel, or require self-quarantine when you return home.
  • Visit the CDC website for COVID-19 travel information and traveler FAQs.

For faculty and staff

  • All University-sponsored travel outside the continental United States for faculty and staff is suspended. This includes travel to other countries and U.S. territories.
  • The University is also suspending all non-essential business travel within the U.S. for faculty and staff, which includes spring break programming.
  • As the global situation is very dynamic, we strongly recommend all faculty and staff reconsider ANY PERSONAL travel plans to other countries and U.S. territories over spring break, Easter break and the coming weeks.
  • If faculty and staff are planning any kind of travel, they should checktravel advisoriesregularly from the CDC, U.S. Department of State and local health authorities prior to and during any planned travel.
  • It is important to check sources such as the CDC, U.S. Department of State and local health authorities often. Because the COVID-19 situation is evolving rapidly, affected areas could issue new travel restrictions or guidance at any time and without prior notice, which could affect or interrupt your travel, or require self-quarantine when you return home.
  • Many faculty and staff planning summer University travel must make decisions soon about upcoming trips. There is no way to predict conditions at travel time either internationally or domestically, or to estimate when the travel suspension may be lifted. University travelers should consult with Options Travel, UD’s official travel manager, regarding current refund policies, and should book refundable or flexible tickets.
  • If you have booked international travel through Concur or through Options travel agents, you should contact Options travel agents at support@optionstravel.com or call 847-803-3000. If you booked your international travel through Altour, contact Altour agents directly at 937-222-1220.
  • All UDRI employees who have booked travel and have questions or change requests should contact JoAnne Davis at Joanne.Davis@udri.udayton.edu or 937-229-3967.
  • Visit the CDC website for COVID-19 travel information and traveler FAQs.

Returning travelers

  • In accordance with CDC guidance for travelers returning from China, Italy, South Korea, Iran or returning from any other country subsequently designated by CDC as Level 3 while are traveling, please be aware that you will be required to self-quarantine — at your permanent address or otherwise away from UD’s campus — for at least 14 days before returning to campus. The University cannot reimburse you for flight change costs and additional expenses.
  • Students who are currently on an education abroad program may stay in place, unless in-country circumstances change (e.g., CDC or host country advisories) or unless they wish to return.
  • The situation in the United States is dynamic, with a daily increase in areas reporting confirmed cases. If you are returning from an area that has experienced an outbreak of COVID-19, or if you’ve been in contact with someone who has tested positive, in accordance with CDC guidelines you may need to self-quarantine at home (or otherwise away from UD’s campus) for 14 days from the time you were possibly exposed.
  • If you are experiencing symptoms or if you have traveled to areas impacted by the coronavirus, please call ahead to the UD Health Center or your health care provider to obtain guidance on next steps.

What UD is doing

  • To our knowledge, there have been no COVID-19 cases connected to UD; however, the University is remaining vigilant.
  • We are in contact with the Ohio Department of Higher Education, the Ohio Department of Health, and Public Health – Dayton & Montgomery County, and we continue to monitor for new information from the CDC for the most current updates and guidance.
  • Currently, crews on campus have increased cleaning and disinfecting of touchpoints and surfaces in common areas of academic and residential buildings. They are providing additional cleaning of high-traffic places. Touch surfaces are being cleaned with hospital-grade disinfectant.
  • Cleaning crews have been doing extra cleaning and disinfecting for several weeks in high-use buildings such as the RecPlex, Bombeck Center and the Health Center.
  • Deep cleaning of residential and academic buildings will be conducted during spring break.
  • Facilities Management is monitoring and continuing to keep hand sanitizer units filled throughout campus.
  • We are working closely with the NCAA, which has established a COVID-19 advisory panel of leading medical, public health and epidemiology experts as well as NCAA member schools, to guide its response to the outbreak of the coronavirus disease for all NCAA events. Click here for full release.

Prevention tips

  • Go here for tips to help reduce your risk of illness, including cold, flu and coronavirus, and information on contacting the University of Dayton Health Center prior to a visit.
  • Other CDC tips for cold and flu prevention can be foundhere, and CDC information on the COVID-19 is here.

Stay informed and take care of yourself

  • If you are feeling anxious or worried because of the news about COVID-19, we encourage students to contact the Counseling Center. Employees may contact Lifeworks Employee Assistance Program.
  • The University will remain vigilant during spring break, and as the situation evolves, we will post any updates at go.udayton.edu/coronavirus. We will send campus wide communications when major changes in the situation occur. We encourage people to check the UD COVID-19 website regularly.