Pepperdine officials are continuing to monitor the 2019 Novel Coronavirus and its impact here in the United States and abroad. Earlier today, the World Health Organization (WHO) formally declared a public health emergency of international concern due to the outbreak of novel coronavirus. As of this afternoon, more than 8,200 cases worldwide have been confirmed with 171 deaths. The WHO, however, has also indicated that human to human transmission outside of China is extremely limited, with just eight cases in four countries outside of China.
Pepperdine is advising all individuals in the University community, including students, faculty, and staff, who have traveled to or from China—or have had sustained contact with individuals who have done so—since January 10, to contact the Student Health Center for a risk assessment. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Los Angeles County Public Health (LACPHD) guidelines stipulate that travelers from China should be monitoring themselves for symptoms of infection. Screening by the Student Health Center will ensure that any at-risk or ill individuals obtain proper care and will help ensure the safety of the campus community.
Los Angeles County Public Health continues to affirm there is no immediate threat to the general public and the risk of spread of the virus in L.A. County is low at this time. Pepperdine community members should continue to engage in their regular activities and, while no special precautions are required, individuals are encouraged to practice good public health hygiene, especially since this is the height of flu season in Southern California.
As a reminder, if you feel sick, to keep from spreading respiratory illness to others within the campus community, you should stay home from school or work, cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and throw the tissue in the trash, and clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces. In addition, wash your hands with soap and water regularly for at least 20 seconds and avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
The situation around the coronavirus remains fluid, and the University will continue to update its advice based on the most current information available. To learn more, community members can visit the Student Health Center’s Frequently Asked Questions page on the coronavirus or call the Student Health Center at 310.506.4316, option 3 with any questions.