March 11, 2020
Dear Members of the Harvard Community,
I write to share that two members of the Harvard community are being tested for novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and are receiving appropriate care. We ask that you respect the privacy of these patients during what is most certainly a difficult time.
Harvard has established protocols for evaluating patients who have symptoms and concern for COVID-19. The protocols are guided by the CDC and advice from local public health agencies. The University is prepared to respond in the event of a confirmed case of COVID-19. To date, there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 on the Harvard University campus.
Please keep the following in mind:
- Everyone should be vigilant and take precautions to prevent the spread of viral illness: wash your hands, cough and sneeze into your elbow, and refrain from touching your face.
- If you are sick with a respiratory illness (cough, sneeze, breathing problems, etc.), you should stay home, avoid other people, and contact your healthcare provider if needed. All of the above precautions are of utmost importance in keeping our campus safe.
- If you have fever or respiratory symptoms and have a reason to think you were exposed to COVID-19, please contact HUHS directly before coming to our office (617) 495-5711. That way HUHS can prepare to receive and evaluate you quickly and safely.
- We recognize that the uncertainty around coronavirus may cause stress and anxiety. If needed, mental health resources are available from CAMHS (for students) and the Employee Assistance Program (for faculty and staff).
- For up-to-date information about coronavirus, please visit Harvard’s COVID-19 website.
Giang T. Nguyen MD, MPH, MSCE, FAAFP
Executive Director, Harvard University Health Services