Purdue University’s President Mitch Daniels and Provost Jay Akridge have announced a series of precautionary measures the school plans to take in case of a coronavirus outbreak.
“It is our hope that we are preparing for many eventualities that will never occur,” Daniels and Ackridge wrote in a letter Monday.
According to the statement--which notes there are no current cases of COVID-19 at Purdue or in Indiana--the school will stop hosting or inviting guests from China, Iran, South Korea, Italy and Japan “effective immediately.” Last week, Purdue halted all university-related travel through the summer to these countries, which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has identified as a level 2 or level 3 risk for coronavirus. A level 2 risk cautions travelers to “practice enhanced precautions,” and a level 3 risk urges against all nonessential travel.
The statement also addresses plans for quarantine spaces in case containment of the virus is required, and the possibility of alternative learning options if normal classes are disrupted.
“It is very unlikely that the problem will progress to the point of needing to impose ‘social distancing’ and pause face-to-face instruction as a result of a COVID-19 outbreak on campus,” Daniels and Ackridge wrote. “However, we are currently working with the Innovative Learning team (Purdue Online) on approaches that will allow us to continue to deliver courses.”
Purdue employees are also advised to develop contingency plans for their specific departments.
The university has created a website with updates and information on the virus.