1.27.20: Health and Wellness Center Campus Update

The university senior leadership and medical professionals in the Health and Wellness Center have been monitoring the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak since it emerged, and continue to do so.

Dear Members of the Campus Community,

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continues to actively monitor and manage the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak in Wuhan, China.  As of this date and time, there are NO CASES OF NOVEL CORONAVIRUS on our campus.  The Lehigh University Health and Wellness Center continues to be in daily communication with the Pennsylvania Department of Health (PA DOH) Bureau of Epidemiology (and they with the CDC), the Bethlehem Health Bureau and other local healthcare entities to ensure ongoing appropriate evaluation, management, and coordination of care for our students.

As mentioned in our previous campus health update, the Health and Wellness Center has reached out to the Office of International Affairs to ensure ongoing communication with international students, as well as to reach out to students from Wuhan City, China to assess recent travel and health status. Additionally, any student who presents to the Health and Wellness Center with fever and respiratory symptoms, in addition to routine medical assessment, are also evaluated regarding recent travel history, possible contacts with a person with known or suspected 2019-nCoV, and health status, as per CDC guidelines.  If you are a student, staff or faculty, the CDC recommends avoiding all non-essential travel to China as they are currently under a Warning Level 3 Advisory.

If you have traveled to the city of Wuhan, China over Winter Break and have any symptoms of fever, cough, shortness of breath OR if you have had close contact with a person who is under investigation for the novel Coronavirus or who has been diagnosed, please call the Health and Wellness Center so that our clinical staff can assess your particular history and symptoms and make recommendations.  The Health and Wellness Center is open Monday-Thursday, 8:15am - 4:00pm and Friday, 9:15am - 4:00pm, after-hours and weekends, please call 610-758-3870 to talk with a clinician-on-call.   The Health and Wellness continues to see many students with respiratory and flu-like symptoms that can include fever, body aches, headache, cough, sore throat, stuffy nose, and fatigue. Viruses that cause colds and the flu can spread from infected people to others through the air and through close personal contact. You can also get infected through contact with stool or respiratory secretions from an infected person. This can happen when you shake hands with someone who has a cold or flu, or touch a surface, like a doorknob, that has respiratory viruses on it, then touch your eyes, mouth, or nose.  Following the health-conscious behaviors above will help to keep you healthy. 

The CDC recommends everyday preventative measures to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses including:

  • Get your annual flu vaccine (the Health and Wellness Center still has free flu-shots). 
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

For additional information about the novel Coronavirus, please visit this link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html. For more information about flu and other respiratory illnesses, please visit: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/index.htm

The Health and Wellness Center will continue to update the campus community as needed given this evolving health situation.


Lehigh University Health and Wellness Center Team