Dear Campus Community,

As news reports have indicated, the Novel Coronavirus outbreak first identified in Wuhan, Hubel Province in China last year, is causing much concern worldwide. At this time, we are aware of no individuals at Shippensburg University to be affected or exposed to the Wuhan virus. However, it is important that we are vigilant to identify any possible cases for early identification and mitigation.

Anyone who has traveled in the region of Wuhan China in the past two weeks and has fever and cough or difficulty breathing should seek medical attention and mention their recent travel history. Although individuals are not likely to become seriously ill with the virus, it is important that persons with risk or concern seek medical advice to minimize spread of the disease.

The Wuhan virus, at this point, does not appear to be any more serious than the flu. Much attention is being given in order to help contain it so that it does not spread world-wide like the flu. The Wuhan virus is a member of a family of viruses known as coronaviruses which are responsible for many cases of the common cold that we experience. The Wuhan virus is a strain of the coronavirus that originally only spread from animals to humans in rare cases, but has now mutated to spread from human to human.

One of the major concerns with the Wuhan virus is that it is new and therefore no one has immunity to it. Also, there is no vaccine so there is the potential that it could become very widespread. Health agencies throughout the world, including in the US, are being very aggressive to identify and isolate individuals with the virus to prevent its spread. To date, two cases have been identified in the US. In both cases, the individuals contracted the disease in Asia. There has been no known transmission of the disease outside of China and neighboring countries in Asia.

Shippensburg University will continue to monitor the Wuhan virus situation closely and be prepared to take additional measures to protect the campus community, if necessary. Shippensburg University will be working closely with the Department of Health and regional health services as warranted.

Additional updates will be provided as the situation changes or there is any known threat to the safety and well-being of our campus community.

More information about the virus and related travel advisories are available on the CDC website.

Thank you.

Dr. B. Donta Truss

Vice President of Enrollment Management, Student Affairs and Student Success