McKinley strives to keep campus safe from coronavirus


Photo Courtesy of CDC

Coronaviruses are a group of viruses that have a halo, or crown-like (corona) appearance when viewed under an electron microscope.

By Samantha Boyle, News Editor

After coronavirus spread to the United States, McKinley Health Center has been taking precautionary measures to make sure everyone on campus is healthy.

According to a Massmail sent around noon Monday, there have been five confirmed cases of coronavirus in four states, including one in Illinois.

Since then, one University student has shown possible symptoms, but it was determined to not have been coronavirus.

The Massmail states that coronavirus is usually spread through droplet contact, such as coughing or sneezing and can be contracted within six feet of an infected person. Coronavirus can also be spread through close personal contact, such as a handshake or touching an object or surface with the virus on it and then touching your mouth, nose or eyes.

Epidemiologists have implemented intensive airborne precautions because the virus is not well studied at this time.

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Students who go to McKinley with respiratory symptoms are being masked at the entrance and learning how to keep themselves and others healthy. Additionally, students can identify themselves as at risk for respiratory illness before going to McKinley. They will also be masked and receive special handling, according to the Massmail.

On Friday, McKinley started contacting students with a known connection to Wuhan City, China, where the virus first started. Some students who traveled home to Wuhan City have chosen to self-quarantine, monitor themselves or wear a surgical mask.

The University is continuing to work with local, state and national health agencies to address the threat, including the World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control.

“As the Director of McKinley Health Center, I want to express my deep gratitude to our international students who have been wonderful to work with during this global situation,” Robert Parker, director of McKinley Health Center wrote at the end of the Massmail.

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