Fordham University Guidelines for Students, Faculty, and Staff Returning from West Africa
Dear Members of the Fordham Community:
You are no doubt aware of an outbreak of the Ebola outbreak in four African nations: Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Nigeria. The Federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) considers Ebola to currently pose little risk to the population of the United States, but individuals who have recently traveled in the regions where Ebola cases are occurring may be at risk for exposure. With that in mind, Fordham asks that any student, faculty, or staff member who has recently visited the affected areas to contact the appropriate University Health Center office upon their return, and prior to entry into Fordham housing, classes, or on-campus work:
Rose Hill and Westchester | (718) 817-4160
Lincoln Center | (212) 636-7160
Ebola symptoms include: fever, headache, joint/muscle aches, weakness, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach pain/lack of appetite. The New York City Department of Health has issued the following guidelines for colleges and universities:
The chances of getting Ebola are extremely low unless a person has traveled to an affected area and has had direct contact with the blood or body fluids (e.g., saliva, urine) of an Ebola infected person or animal, or with objects that were contaminated with blood or body fluids.
Fever in people who have traveled to the affected areas is most likely due to a common infectious disease (e.g. malaria), but should be evaluated by a health-care provider.
• Faculty, students, and staff members who have arrived in the United States from an affected area within the past three weeks and who are not sick should be instructed to check their temperature daily for fever for 21 days starting the day after leaving the Ebola affected area. They can conduct normal activities and do not need to be isolated.
• Faculty, students, and staff members who remain healthy after 21 days are not at risk for Ebola and can stop monitoring their temperature.
• If a person has a fever or develops a fever during the 21-day observation period, he or she should consult a health-care provider immediately. The person should tell the provider about the symptoms and recent travel before going to the office or emergency room to decrease the potential risk of spreading the virus.
• Faculty, students, and staff members who become ill more than three weeks after arriving from an Ebola affected country or city do not need to be evaluated for Ebola.
Members of the Fordham community who have traveled to the affected regions and experience any symptoms within 21 days of their return, including a fever of 100 degrees or higher, should not return to Fordham housing, nor attend class nor work, but should call the appropriate Health Center immediately, or after business hours, the Office of Public Safety at (718) 817-2222, and ask to speak with the duty supervisor.
The Ebola outbreak is evolving and the list of affected areas may change. For an updated list of countries visit: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola
Again, medical authorities believe the likelihood of an Ebola outbreak in the United States is very low, and there is no reason to believe any Fordham student, faculty, or staff members are at risk. In sharing these guidelines, the University is acting with an abundance of caution. Anyone with questions regarding Ebola, or the University’s policies, should contact the University Health Center.
Kathleen M. Malara MSN, FNP
Executive Director, University Health Services