The following is an email that was sent to Loyola parents and guardians on Tuesday, March 3, 2020.
Subject: Loyola's preparedness related to the novel coronavirus, COVID-19
With international concerns around the continued spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, I wanted to be in touch to assure you that the health and safety of our students is always our top priority. Student Health Services is monitoring the situation in conjunction with city and state health officials and Loyola leadership.
At this time, there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 at Loyola University Maryland or in the state of Maryland. Loyola has launched a webpage to provide ongoing updates and information to all members of our community, including you. That site includes travel advice, personal hygiene tips, information on emergency preparedness on campus, international programs updates, and self-care resources for our students. It also has links to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Student Health Services FAQ page, and other resources.
We have been in touch with your students via email on this topic multiple times, including earlier today when we let them know that if they have been traveling in an area of known risk/exposure as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), they must contact Student Health Services prior to returning to campus. Given the incubation period of the illness, a student who has been in one of those areas will likely be advised to remain off campus for 14 days and then check in with Student Health Services prior to returning to campus to ensure they are asymptomatic. We have put the same policy in place for faculty, staff, and administrators, following the CDC’s guidance and that of the Baltimore City Health Department.
Requiring a quarantine of a student at home is a means of separating them if there is a reasonable belief they have been exposed to a communicable disease but are not yet symptomatic. They may be perfectly healthy. This is, however, the best way to prevent the possible spread of a communicable disease. The University has asked the faculty to be understanding and flexible of students’ needs.
With many students traveling over the spring break and likely not reading email regularly, thank you for helping us spread the word as we try to keep all our students healthy.
Donelda Cook, Ph.D.
Vice President for Student Development