OSU Developing Coronavirus Contingency Plans, Expands Support Services

To: OSU Faculty and Staff

From: Edward Feser, Provost and Executive Vice President

February 28, 2020

OSU faculty and staff,

Oregon State University continues to actively monitor the coronavirus COVID-19 global health situation, and we also are developing university contingency plans should a global pandemic or a widespread outbreak occur in the U.S. Our aim is to ensure the well-being of the university community and to enable the continuation of OSU teaching, research, outreach, student services and other activities.

We share this news not to create concern – there are still no confirmed coronavirus cases in Oregon – but to indicate that prudent and significant university-wide planning is underway. We will share more information on this contingency planning effort over the next week.

To facilitate the on-going sharing of information about the virus, we have added a link on the OSU home page to a new page that provides detailed and up-to-date coronavirus information; links to OSU, local, state and federal resources; updates on the latest federal travel restrictions; and previous university communications about the virus and other information.

At the present time, restrictions apply for travel to China, Italy, Iran and South Korea. However, because this is a rapidly developing situation – and because U.S. officials believe the potential public health threat posed by the coronavirus is high – it is important to check OSU’s page regularly, as well as advisories and warnings from the U.S. Department of State and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention prior to finalizing travel plans and undertaking travel.

OSU also has established a dedicated non-emergency information line within Student Health Services to assist faculty, staff and students engaged in international and domestic travel and who may have coronavirus health concerns related to their returning to Oregon. In non-emergency cases, please e-mail: [email protected] or call 541-737-9931 Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Pacific Time, to receive support from a trained staff member. In the case of a medical emergency, call 911 or a nearby emergency medical facility.

Whether traveling in the U.S., abroad or staying home over spring break, the best preventive measures for any communicable disease continue to be the practices you undertake as part of your daily routine, especially during flu season:

  • Wash your hands for 20 seconds or more with soapy water or use a hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid sharing anything that has come in contact with another person’s saliva, whether in your own living or social environments.
  • Cough and sneeze into your elbow or a tissue.
  • Get adequate sleep and eat well-balanced meals to support a healthy immune system.

Please remain mindful and supportive of members of the OSU community who may be more directly affected by the coronavirus situation. Thank you for your continued work to keep the OSU community safe and healthy.


Edward Feser
Provost and Executive Vice President