2019 Novel Coronavirus Frequently Asked Questions

What is the University of Oregon doing to protect the campus community?

The health of the university community is a top priority; campus officials are monitoring reports from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO), and also is coordinating with the Oregon Health Authority and Lane County Health and Human Services.

The University Health Center is following guidelines from the CDC and has a procedure in place to survey all students feeling ill for recent travel, or exposure to someone who has recently traveled, as part of their medical assessment. The CDC’s guidance for the coronavirus that the UHC is following is outlined here.

The Health Center encourages concerned community members to refer to the CDC’s coronavirus webpage for the most up-to-date information. We will continue to publish updates relevant to the UO community at health.uoregon.edu.

How can I protect myself?

While the risk of contracting the coronavirus in the U.S. is still very low, there are some general precautions you should always take during cold and flu season.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds to avoid spreading any germs or viruses to others. View a CDC video of proper handwashing techniques here. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available. Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and nose with unwashed hands.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
  • Stay home if you are sick, except to seek medical care.

What is the 2019 Novel Coronavirus?

The 2019 Novel Coronavirus, or 2019-nCoV, is a new respiratory virus first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. A novel coronavirus is a new coronavirus that has not previously been identified.

What is the source of 2019-nCoV?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that are common in many different species of animals, including camels, cattle, cats and bats. Rarely, animal coronaviruses can infect people and then spread between people. Health officials suggest the virus could have originated in a large, open seafood and live animal market.

How does the virus spread?

The virus probably originally emerged from an animal source but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization are reporting increasing numbers of the virus spreading person-to-person.

What are the symptoms that the coronavirus can cause?

Current symptoms reported for patients with the coronavirus include mild to severe respiratory illness with fever, cough, and difficulty breathing.

What if I start to feel ill?

Individuals who have traveled to China in the past 14 days or have had close contact with someone confirmed to have or under examination for the coronavirus should closely monitor their health and follow the CDC’s guidelines if they start to feel ill.

For more information

The most up-to-date information about the coronavirus can be found on a dedicated CDC web page. The UO will continue to post campus updates on the Health Center website.