COVID-19 precautions and recommendations

March 5, 2020

At this time, the university is proceeding with most scheduled events, classes and operations, including athletic events. Please note that the situation can change quickly, and we will post any updates to our COVID-19 information page.

Dear Members of the UM-Dearborn Community,

We are writing to share the latest guidelines and information for students, faculty, and staff related to the COVID-19 virus. 

University of Michigan-Dearborn leadership has been working closely with University of Michigan executive officers and health professionals to closely monitor the rapidly changing developments, and we are making a number of recommendations to promote a safe and healthy environment for our community. 

At this time, the university is proceeding with most scheduled events, classes and operations, including athletic events. Please note that the situation can change quickly, and we will post any updates to our COVID-19 information page.

Important COVID-19 updates:

  • At this time, there have been no cases diagnosed in Michigan. New cases continue to be identified in the United States and abroad.
  • If you are sick, stay home from class or work. We ask faculty and managers to accommodate students and employees who stay home while sick. If faculty have questions about student accommodations, please contact the Office of the Provost (msollenb@umich.edu).
  • If you have traveled to China, South Korea, Italy or Iran, stay home and self-isolate (tips listed below) and monitor your health for 14 days from your last day in that country, per guidance from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
  • Register international travel using U-M Travel Registry

Illness prevention

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends several everyday preventive actions that individuals can take to help prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Wash your hands as if you just chopped jalapeño peppers and you need to remove your contact lenses.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, and immediately throw the tissue in the trash and clean hands with sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently used objects and surfaces.
  • Stay at home when you are sick.
  • Use alternatives to shaking hands or hugging.

Travelers returning to campus

If you have been in a country with a CDC Level 3 Travel Notice (as of March 4, these are China, South Korea, Italy and Iran), you should self-isolate for 14 days. Get medical attention immediately if you have symptoms of fever, cough and shortness of breath.

Level 3 Notices are the CDC’s highest warning level, and they indicate a high risk to travelers due to widespread community transmission of respiratory illness caused by COVID-19 in these countries. 

Students needing to self-isolate based on prior travel are encouraged to consider doing so at home or in a setting that minimizes contact with others. Students living at The Union at Dearborn who have a need to self-isolate are encouraged to return home, if possible, to complete the isolation period. If that is not possible, these students are encouraged to contact the Dean of Students Office for guidance. Students with roommates who are self-isolating should take precautionary measures including limiting contact with anyone who is self-isolating, cleaning surfaces, washing hands frequently, and avoiding sharing utensils.

Employees with questions about working arrangements during self-isolation should contact their unit supervisor.

How to self-isolate:

  • Stay home. Do not go to work, school or public areas.
  • Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home. Avoid visitors to your home.
  • Self-monitor for fever by checking temperature at least twice a day. Contact your healthcare provider if you develop a fever or respiratory symptoms.
  • When seeking medical care, call ahead and tell them about your symptoms.
  • Do not use public transport like buses, taxis, or ride-sharing.
  • If you have symptoms, wear a facemask when you are around other people.

More information on self-isolation is available here.

Additionally, unless you are sick with cough, sneezing and fever, it is not advised to wear a mask.

Campus preparations

The university is taking extra precautions to clean high-touch surfaces on campus, including dining areas, classrooms and recreational facilities.

UM-Dearborn leaders, U-M officials and medical experts, in close coordination with the state and local public health experts, are closely monitoring developments that may disrupt campus operations.

Colleagues across campus have been working to ensure that any impact on continuation of critical operations and instruction is minimal. The Office of the Provost has compiled a number of helpful resources to facilitate a necessary transition to online instruction. Departments have been working with the Office of Emergency Management on their Continuity of Operations Plans, and Information Technology Services has developed an online resource for staff that need to work remotely

Future travel

Travel disruptions related to the virus are possible, and the situation continues to change quickly. We recommend that you carefully reconsider any planned global travel given current uncertainties. Disruptions to travel plans may include flight cancellations, additional health screenings, quarantine, restrictions on re-entering the United States, or requirements to self-isolate upon arrival. 

If you plan to travel in the near future, it’s important to incorporate as much flexibility as possible. Please register your international travel – personal or business-related – using the U-M Travel Registry. The travel registry is the university’s official means for sharing urgent health, safety and security related information, and we have been sharing information with all registered travelers.

U-M Travel Restrictions related to COVID-19 are currently in place for China, Iran, Italy and South Korea. All travel to these countries, for students, faculty and staff, is discouraged. 

We are assisting students who were studying abroad and returning from Level 3 countries and will continue to monitor conditions overseas. International university programs not in the Level 3 countries are currently proceeding as planned. If you have questions about a specific education abroad program, please contact the Office of Global Education (snriggs@umich.edu).

This is a rapidly changing situation. Please check UM-Dearborn’s Key Issues page frequently for the latest information: umdearborn.edu/offices/external-relations/key-issues/coronavirus.

We know that COVID-19 is affecting many of our loved ones and friends. We also have heard reports of xenophobia associated with the outbreak – which we denounce in the strongest possible terms. During this time, it’s important that we support one another, promote a healthy community, and stay up to date on the latest information from our health professionals.

Stay calm, stay healthy,

Domenico Grasso
Chancellor 

Preeti Malani, M.D.
U-M Chief Health Officer
Professor of Medicine

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