Campus Update and Health Information

February 5, 2020

Dear Faculty, Staff and Students,

As we are following the emergence of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) the understanding of the virus is evolving as well as the recommendations from the World Health Organization (WHO), Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Public Health – Seattle & King County (PHSKC). The Student Health Center (SHC) along with many campus partners are continuing to closely monitor the situation and would like to share an update on the most recent information available.

As of today there have been 11 confirmed cases in the United States with one case in Washington state. Person-to-person spread has been seen among close contacts of returned travelers from Wuhan, Hubei Province, China, but at this time, the Coronavirus is NOT currently spreading in the U.S. The CDC states, “The goal of the ongoing US public health response is to detect new cases quickly and prevent further spread of 2019-nCov in the U.S.” Recent guidance has been released from the CDC regarding travelers returning from China. The recommendation is that all people travelling from China and arriving in the US after 2 p.m. PST on Feb. 2, 2020, stay at home away from others and monitor their health for a 14-day period. In the communication from PHSKC they state, “At this time, the immediate risk to the general public in Washington and the United States is considered to be low. There is no evidence that the new Coronavirus is spreading in Washington at this time.”

It is also very important for everyone to know that the risk of Coronavirus is not at all connected with race, ethnicity or nationality. Sharing accurate information is essential during this time of heightened concern.

For SU students/faculty/staff WITHOUT symptoms and no known exposure

Travel from China with arrival in U.S. AFTER 2 p.m. PST on Feb. 2, 2020:

  • Notify Seattle University Public Safety as soon as possible at 206-296-5990
  • Stay at home, away from others
  • Monitor health for 14 days

Travel from China with arrival in US BEFORE 2 p.m. PST on Feb. 2, 2020:

  • There is no recommendation to restrict activities
  • Watch for changes in your health for 14 days after leaving China
  • If you develop a fever or cough or difficulty breathing during this 14 day period, avoid contact with others. Call your healthcare provider to tell them about your symptoms and your recent travel

For SU students/faculty/staff WITH symptoms or known high risk exposure

  • Includes all people with:
    • Symptoms of fever or cough or difficulty breathing within 14 days of returning from China OR
    • Close contact with a person known to have the 2019 Novel Coronavirus
  • Call your healthcare provider to tell them about your symptoms and your recent travel.
  • Notify Seattle University Public Safety as soon as possible at 206-296-5990.

Recommendations for Preventing and Minimizing Spread of Illness

At this time, the risk of the general public being exposed to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus is low. Steps you can take to prevent spread of the flu and common cold will also help prevent coronavirus:

  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home while you are sick and avoid close contact with others.
  • Cover your mouth AND nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing.

For current information about this evolving public health situation, visit the CDC 2019 Novel Coronavirus page or for local information, Public Health—Seattle & King County.


Tara Hicks, ARNP
Director of Student Health Center
Seattle University
Office: 206.296.6300 I Fax: 206.296.6089

Alvin A. Sturdivant, Ed.D.
Vice President for Student Development
Seattle University
Office: 206.296.6066 I Fax: 206.296.6063