What is the current status of coronavirus at Yale University?
There are currently no identified cases in the Yale community or in Connecticut.
Health authorities throughout the world are focused on this illness and Yale Health has highly professional, trained medical staff members who are closely following developments, working closely with other University offices to make well informed decisions, and are committed to protecting the health of the Yale community.
What is a coronavirus?
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause respiratory illnesses such as the common cold, and more severe illnesses such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). Coronaviruses commonly circulate in animals and sometimes also infect humans. This novel coronavirus (2019n-CoV) is a strain thought to originate in animals that was not previously found in humans. The CDC (US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and WHO (World Health Organization) are closely monitoring the cases of this infection for this reason.
What are the symptoms of COVID-19?
Most cases are mild with respiratory complaints such as fever, cough with shortness of breath, and breathing difficulties. More severe cases of the infection can lead to pneumonia and there have been some deaths. Those with chronic medical conditions appear to be at high risk for serious complications.
How is the infection spread?
The infection appears to spread by respiratory droplets, such as when a person coughs or sneezes.
What is being done to protect the health of the Yale community?
- We are working closely with the Connecticut Department of Public Health, Yale Emergency Management, the Office of International Students & Scholars, and other key offices to monitor the situation.
In keeping with intensifying public health measures, all Yale University faculty, staff, students, visitors and other members of the Yale community who have returned from mainland China in the past 14 days should complete this registration form. Yale Health will then contact you to provide assistance and further instructions. The information you provide will be kept secure and confidential. Consistent with U.S. Government advice, we also ask you to self-isolate for 14 days after returning from mainland China (guidelines for self-isolation).
How can I prevent getting COVID-19?
There is still much that is unknown about this virus. However, the prevention steps recommended during cold and flu season are helpful in reducing the risk for infections:
- Wash your hands often using soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you’ve touched someone who is sick. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer (like Purell®).
- Avoid close contact with people who are experiencing symptoms.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
- If you have cold and cough symptoms, make sure to cover your coughs and sneezes by using the bend of your arm (elbow) or use disposable tissues and immediately throw them in the trash.
- Stay home if you are ill and contact your healthcare provider.
- Receive a flu shot to prevent influenza if you have not already done so.
What if I have recently traveled to China or have been in contact with someone who may have been ill with COVID-19?
- All Yale University faculty, staff, students, visitors and other members of the Yale community who have returned from mainland China since January 20, 2020, should complete this registration form.
- Monitor your health for the next 14 days. Watch for these signs and symptoms:
- Fever. Take your temperature each day.
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Other early symptoms to watch for are chills, body aches, sore throat, headache, diarrhea, nausea/vomiting, and runny nose.
- If you develop fever or any of these symptoms, CALL Yale Health immediately prior to coming in for a visit. Students should call Student Health (203-432-0312). Faculty and staff should call their primary care provider. If you are a Yale Health member, you should contact Internal Medicine (203-432-0038) or Pediatrics (203-432-0206).
- Before going to your medical appointment, be sure to tell your healthcare provider that you have recently traveled to China or possibly been in contact with someone who was ill with the novel coronavirus.
- Practice routine infection precautions including frequent hand washing with alcohol-based sanitizer, avoiding contact with sick people.
Are there travel restrictions to China?
The State Department has issued Level 4: Do Not Travel for China. Travelers should be prepared for travel restrictions to be put into effect with little or no advance notice. Commercial carriers have reduced or suspended routes to and from China.
Yale strongly recommends that faculty, students, and staff reschedule or cancel all university and personal travel to China between now and April. This includes academic programs, extracurricular programs, executive education programs, and all other Yale-affiliated travel.
Are there travel warnings due to COVID-19 in other places?
CDC has issued a Level 1 Watch for Hong Kong and Japan. At this time, CDC does not recommend canceling or postponing travel to Hong Kong or Japan however the ongoing outbreak has spread to these areas. Visit the CDC’s Travel Health Notices for more information.
What if I am traveling overseas and have a medical emergency?
Yale internaltional travlers who are overseas with a medical emergency should contact ISOS through the ISOS assistance app or by calling 1-215-942-8478. ISOS is a resource for members of the Yale community that provides emergency medical, security, and travel assistance.
Who can I talk to if this situation makes me feel stressed and overwhelmed?
- Students can call Mental Health & Counseling (203-432-0290).
- Faculty and staff can contact the EAP (800-327-9240).