Coronavirus updates and resources made available to U of R community

By University Advancement and Communications Posted: February 7, 2020 11:40 a.m.

This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by the 2019 Novel Coronavirus
This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Photo: CDC

Since the onset of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), the University of Regina has been working in partnership with the Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) to closely monitor and provide updates to the University community. Timely updates will be provided here as appropriate. 

“Because the U of R and the Public Health Unit of the SHA have built a strong relationship over the years, joint processes and procedures are already in place to ensure we have the most up-to-date information to prevent transmission of coronavirus infections or other illnesses and track any cases should they arise,” said Darren Cherwaty, Director of Health, Safety and Wellness at the University and member of the University’s Emergency Operations Centre. 

We are in the peak of the cold and influenza season and when someone sneezes or coughs, it is much more likely due to these illnesses than the novel coronavirus. To date, no confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) have been reported in Saskatchewan and the risk here remains low. 

What is always important is to be aware of how to protect your health and to keep up to date with best practices when fighting any kind of virus or infection. 

Cherwaty advises that commonly used methods for good hygiene can help reduce the risk of infection. Make it a habit to:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds;
    Wash your hands

    Using good hygiene can
    help to reduce the risk
    of infection

  • Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer when soap and water are not available (There are many hand sanitizer stations located on all U of R campuses.);
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands;
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick; and,
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Put your used tissue in a waste basket. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve, not your hands. Remember to wash your hands after coughing or sneezing.

The University is adhering to the Government of Canada’s recommendations that Canadians avoid all non-essential travel to China and avoid all travel to Hubei Province. As a precautionary measure, all University funded or sponsored travel to China, including research grants, has been cancelled while the advisories are in place.

The Government of Canada is also advising anyone who has travelled to Hubei province in the last 14 days, to limit contact with others for a total of 14 days from the date they left Hubei. This means self-isolate and stay at home. In addition, they are to contact the local public health authority in their province or territory or Health Line 811 within 24 hours of arriving in Canada.

All travellers from the rest of mainland China are advised to monitor themselves for symptoms and to contact the local public health authority in their province or territory if they feel sick. Should a fever, cough, difficulty breathing or any other symptom arise within 14 days after returning to Canada, they should seek medical attention immediately and inform their health care provider or local health authority about symptoms and travel history.

Canadian travellers are encouraged to check Travel.gc.ca regularly for updates to the government’s travel advisory.