Dear USD Campus Community,
Welcome back to USD! We hope you had a pleasant and healthy Spring Break. Many may have traveled during the break and as you return to campus we want you to have information to protect yourself and our community from getting and spreading respiratory illnesses like coronavirus (COVID-19).
There remains no reported cases of the virus on our campus, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention currently classifies the virus as low risk to the American public.
While there is currently no vaccine to protect against the Coronavirus, you can take practical steps to reduce the risk of being exposed to any respiratory illnesses. The best way to keep our community safe and healthy is through common-sense practices found in the CDC's Guidance. Each one of us can play an important role in this effort.
Everyone can practice everyday preventive behaviors!
- Stay home when sick.
- Cover coughs and sneezes.
- Frequently wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Clean frequently touched surfaces (e.g., door knobs, keyboards, cell phones, remote controls.
- Keep your hands away from your mouth, nose and eyes.
We are encouraging USD students, faculty, staff and administrators to stay home, rest and practice social distancing if you are sick.
Those who have symptoms of acute respiratory illness are recommended to stay home and to practice social isolation. This means to avoid gatherings and busy meeting places such as the classroom, Student Life Pavilion, the library, study groups, and meetings. Try to avoid having visitors gather in your room. It is also helpful to avoid public transportation and traveling when you are ill.
Even when on the road to recovery you are encouraged to stay home and practice social distancing until you are free of fever (100.4oF/ 37.8oC or greater), signs of a fever, or any other symptoms for at least 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicine, such as Tylenol, Ibuprofen or cough suppressant.
All employees are encouraged to inform their supervisors of an illness and talk to them about any specific arrangements that may be needed. All students are encouraged to talk to their professors about keeping up with academic work from home when they are sick.
In an effort to support social distancing and the need for prioritizing direct medical care, sick notes should only be asked for in extreme cases. In such situations, students can make the request through a secure message on the wellness portal.
The CDC has information to help students, staff, faculty and their families understand COVID-19 and additional steps they can take to protect themselves:
We have also created a website dedicated to helpful information and frequently asked questions and answers about the Coronavirus and its impact on our campus community.
It is our hope that during this time, all members of the USD community will act with compassion and seek to ensure that all people are treated with dignity and respect. It is important that we work together to maintain a supportive and inclusive community as we learn more about how to support the overall well-being of our Torero family.
Melissa Halter, PhD
Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs for Student Wellness