COVID-19: Update as of March 10
A Message from the Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs
Good Morning Manor College Community,
I hope everyone had a restful and healthy spring break! While spring is just around the corner, our area is still in peak cold and flu season and with coronavirus disease (COVID-19) spreading in the United States, it is important that we all know how to stay healthy.
As of March 6, the United States has more than 225 confirmed cases of COVID-19. This virus is moving like the common flu, but it is nowhere near as bad as we are experiencing this flu season, with only 225 coronavirus cases reported in the U.S. today compared to 19 million cases of the common flu. Currently there are two presumed cases in Pennsylvania, but CDC officials said they expect to see the number of cases increase as the disease spreads, while also stressing that the immediate risk remains low.
What Manor is Doing?
While there have been no confirmed COVID-19 cases with a connection to Manor, the college is taking the following steps across campus to assist in keeping members of the Manor community healthy.
- Hand sanitizing stations (like the one pictured below) are available throughout campus.
- Hand Sanitizer and Sanitizing wipes are in the process of being placed in classrooms, the library and computer labs.
- Manor’s cleaning staff is increasing the cleaning of all touchpoints in classrooms and offices.
What You Can Do?
The best ways to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses (which includes the flu) are to:
- 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 shaking hands. The elbow bump is the new way to greet people!
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home when you are sick. Please understand that all of your professors will work with you to make sure you do not fall behind. We are as concerned with your health as we are your grades!
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue or the inside of your elbow. Immediately throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- Get a flu vaccine if you have not yet done so.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as Manor’s own public health experts, assure there is no reason to believe that any member of the Manor community is at a higher risk for contracting this virus.
Manor’s public health team continues to evaluate current conditions and advice from CDC and medical partners. Manor continues to evaluate its preparedness actions.
Our Health Services office is open Monday through Thursday from 8:00 AM to 3:00 PM and is available to answer any questions.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Coronavirus and how is it transmitted?
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illnesses ranging from the common cold to more severe respiratory illnesses. The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new strain that had not been identified previously in humans. The virus is spread through respiratory droplets from an infected person coughing and sneezing on somebody within 6 feet range (close contact), by touching an infected person’s hands or face, or by touching an object or surface that an infected person has touched. Symptoms may appear between 2 and 14 days after exposure.
What are the signs that you are sick?
Some symptoms of COVID-19 infection are similar to Influenzas such as fever, cough and body aches. Additional specific symptoms often include shortness of breath and difficulty breathing. In more severe cases, the virus can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory illness, kidney failure, and death. However, it is important to note that healthy young people are significantly less likely to become seriously ill compared to older adults.
What patients require testing for COVID-19?
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now identifies three groups that require screening. These groups are:
- Any patients who have fever AND respiratory symptoms (e.g. cough or shortness of breath) AND have traveled to the following countries within 14 days since their symptom onset:
- China, including the islands of Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan
- South Korea
- Anyone with fever AND respiratory symptoms AND who has had close contact with a laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 patient within 14 days.
- Any patients with severe acute lower respiratory illness (e.g., pneumonia, ARDS) requiring hospitalization WITHOUT alternative explanatory diagnosis such as influenza.
If I experience flu-like symptoms, what should I do before returning to campus to make sure I don’t have Coronavirus?
If you are in your home community contact your primary care physician’s office and ask to be screened for COVID-19. Stay at home until you have been properly diagnosed and advised of any restrictions or precautions.
In closing, it is important for students to read and understand the above information, make informed decisions whether traveling or at home and reduce their risk for infection. Information about COVID-19 is still unfolding and constantly under review. However, at this time, the risk remains low both regionally and nationally and health officials are constantly monitoring the situation and advising care providers. Manor has Emergency Preparedness plans and we will implement them if necessary. For now, we will continue to monitor the situation and regularly update and advise students, faculty and staff about COVID 19 developments and action steps on campus.