March 23, 2020

Health Update 3/23/20:

Dear WCU Community,

I write to share that an off-campus WCU student who traveled outside of the United States during Spring Break contacted the University yesterday to inform that the student had tested positive for COVID-19. At the time of the report, the student, who never returned to campus, indicated that they are doing well, and are under medical supervision, as well as self-isolation at home. Upon securing medical confirmation today, the University immediately notified the Chester County Health Department and advised the student to inform all those with whom the student has had close interactions. The University is in contact with the student and sends its best wishes for a full recovery. This is the only confirmed case of COVID-19 that the University is aware of to date.

Out of an abundance of concern for the good health of the University community, WCU was the first university in the area to make the decision not to have students return to campus from Spring Break and moved to alternate modes of instruction for the remainder of the spring semester. In-person, face-to-face instruction will not occur on campus and courses will resume by alternate means (i.e., email, Skype, Zoom, etc.) on March 30.    

One of the most important insights from public health authorities is that how a community responds to emerging cases can have direct impact on the outbreak’s duration and severity. By looking out for ourselves and one another and heeding the public health expertise available to us, we can help to slow the spread of the virus. Just this afternoon, Governor Wolf has issued a stay-at-home order for seven counties in Pennsylvania (Allegheny, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Monroe, Montgomery, and Philadelphia). In keeping with the need to practice active social distancing, West Chester Borough Mayor Dianne Herrin issued a State of Emergency regarding social gatherings. Please know that social gatherings of 10 or more people in the Borough will be considered a violation subject to citation.

WCU has created an online COVID-19 Information Form students can use to share with us if they are experiencing symptoms, or if they have been exposed to or tested for COVID-19. This will help us coordinate reach-out efforts to students as appropriate. 

During these especially challenging times, we ask everyone to continue healthy practices that will minimize the possibility of the spread of the virus. Know that we will emerge an even stronger community for our efforts to take care of each other.

More info:
WCU Corona Virus Website

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