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Students cautioned about spring break travel

A novel coronavirus, named Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), was identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China in 2019. The illness caused by this virus has been named coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Illustration by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Bradley University sent out an email to all students and parents on Monday afternoon, reminding students to be cautious when planning a trip over spring break, in the midst of spreading COVID-19, also known as coronavirus. 

In the email, the university discourages any trips to areas that are listed as Level 3 and Level 2 in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s travel advisory. China, South Korea, Italy and Iran are listed as Level 3, the highest risk. Japan is listed as a level 2 region. The CDC also recommends all travelers reconsider cruise ship voyages to Asia at this time.

The email requires individuals who travel to any of those areas to self-isolate at his or her permanent home address for 14 days prior to returning to campus. Bradley encourages all individuals to disclose international travel plans with the university at https://www.bradley.edu/sites/coronavirus/travel-information/travel-disclosure/

“In the unlikely event that the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) or CDC would call for the closing of colleges, we would comply,” the email stated. “We are revisiting our pandemic plan and making preparations for academic continuity, as well as our ability to implement them and continue to serve our students. We will communicate with you in detail IF this were to happen.”

Nathan Thomas, vice president for student affairs, confirmed that Bradley is not planning on closing the university when students return from the spring break, as of now. 

Masks and gloves are not recommended for students and the general public, as there are currently no confirmed cases in Central Illinois. However, students are advised to wash hands frequently with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol; avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands; and to self-isolate when sick and report the symptoms to the Bradley’s Health Service at 309-677-2700.

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