Internal News

UWF Notice: Coronavirus Spring Break Safety

University officials are working closely with the Escambia County Health Department and the Florida Department of Health, along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, to closely monitor the current outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Blue graphic of Coronavirus (COV-19) cells

The immediate risk to the American public is low at this time, but UWF would like to make everyone aware of preventative measures to protect yourself. We recognize that this can be a stressful time for many members of our community. We encourage you to take steps to safeguard your personal health and to minimize disease transmission to the community. The CDC advises following these simple steps to prevent the spread of germs:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • 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 using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.
  • Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a face mask.
    • CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a face mask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.
    • Face masks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of face masks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a healthcare facility).
    • Although widespread use of face masks for asymptomatic people outside clinical settings is not recommended, remember that it is a social norm in many countries to wear a face mask during cold and flu season. Do not assume that a person wearing a face mask is infectious, or that they should be avoided.

COVID-19 symptoms are generally flu-like and include fever, cough, runny nose and difficulty breathing. Symptoms are thought to appear within two to 14 days after exposure, and a person can be contagious but not symptomatic.

If you are returning from an affected area or have been in contact with someone from an affected area and are symptomatic, including fever above 100.4, cough or shortness of breath, the University asks that you self-isolate for 14 days and avoid contact with others, except to receive medical care. During the isolation period:

Call UWF Student Health Services immediately at 850.474.2172. In order to minimize the risk for exposure on campus, do NOT visit Student Health Services. Student Health Services CANNOT test for the coronavirus.

If you believe you require immediate medical attention, whether at the E.R. or your medical provider’s office, inform the medical staff in advance that you have recently returned from an affected area or been in contact with someone from an affected area.

  • Avoid using public transportation if possible.
  • After your 14-day isolation, call Student Health Services at 850.474.2172 to schedule an appointment to be cleared to return to class.
  • UWF will continue to monitor health warnings from the CDC and the Florida Department of Health and will communicate any updates to the campus community.

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