TOWSON UNIVERSITY

POLICY ON TRAVEL TO COUNTRIES AFFECTED BY SARS 

(Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome)

This policy is designed to protect the University community from potential exposure to SARS.

Scope -- This policy applies to students, faculty or staff (collectively, the University community) who have traveled to or arrived in the U.S. from any areas identified by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) as on Travel Alert or Travel Advisory status for SARS, and who will be coming to the Towson University to attend class, teach, work and/or live.

SARS Information -- CDC has identified the risk of SARS and issued travel notices based on the scope and magnitude of the outbreak, containment methods, quality of surveillance and healthcare in those countries.  Two levels of classification are used: Travel Alerts (informs travelers of a health concern, no recommendation against nonessential travel) and Travel Advisories (recommends that nonessential travel be deferred, higher risk of disease).  The CDCís list of affected countries and related travel notices will be updated as conditions change.  That information can be found at http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/sars/travel.htm.  

Travel --The University recommends postponing nonessential travel to any SARS-affected areas.    Travelers to any countries on CDCís travel alert or travel advisory status should be aware of the precautions advised to minimize risk of exposure to SARS (http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/sars/travel_advice.htm) and will be expected to monitor their health on their return or arrival in the U.S. as outlined below.  The CDC also advises minimizing social contacts during the ten-day monitoring period.

Any member of the University community coming to the University campus (directly or indirectly) from countries for which CDC has issued either Travel Alerts or Travel Advisories must monitor their health for ten (10) days after arriving in the U.S.   Monitoring consists of checking at least once daily for: Temperature of greater than  100.4 degrees F  and respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing).  Members of the University community should plan their travel with this requirement in mind.

Students -- Students coming to the University campus (directly or indirectly) from countries for which CDC has issued Travel Advisories (see http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/sars/travel.htm ) will not be allowed to attend classes or move into University housing until cleared by the Health Center, and will be required to find alternative housing for ten days upon their arrival in the U.S.  Such students must visit the Health Center upon arriving in the U.S., to be checked for the following evidence of SARS:

            * Fever of greater than 100.4 degrees F or

* Respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing)

If neither of these symptoms are present, the student will be given a log to continue monitoring his/her temperature and symptoms daily for ten days.  If the student has no symptoms after ten days, he/she should return to the Health Center for clearance.  If the second Health Center check reveals no symptoms, the Health Center will issue a certificate of clearance for the student to move into residence halls and attend class. 

Faculty/staff -- Other members of the University community coming to the University campus (directly or indirectly) from countries for which CDC has issued either Travel Alerts or Travel Advisories should monitor their temperature and respiratory symptoms daily for ten days after their arrival in the U.S.   Any such symptoms should be reported as soon as possible to the individualís personal health care provider.  The CDC recommends telling the provider about the symptoms before going to the office or emergency room, so that any necessary arrangements can be made to prevent transmission to others.  The CDC website referenced above (http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/sars/travel_advice.htm) also includes other recommendations for individuals who believe they have SARS or symptoms compatible with SARS.

A member of the University community who has either of the above symptoms (respiratory symptoms or a temperature above 100.4 degrees F) must be quarantined off-campus for 72 hours. If the Health Center (for students) or the individualís personal health care provider (for faculty and/or staff) determines that there has been no further progression of symptoms after 72 hours, the quarantine period will end, but the individual must continue to monitor his/her symptoms for a total of ten days before coming onto campus.  An individual who displays either or both of the above symptoms must contact the Health Center (for students) or his/her personal health care provider (for faculty and/or staff) by phone for instructions.  A INDIVIDUAL WITH EITHER SYMPTOM WHO HAS ARRIVED FROM A SARS-AFFECTED COUNTRY SHOULD SHOULD CALL RATHER THAN COME TO THE Health CENTER IN PERSON, AS THE HEALTH CENTER CANNOT ISOLATE/CONTAIN INFECTION.