Stanford Community Update on Coronavirus
Posted: Tuesday, February 4th, 2020, 12:14 pm PST

Stanford Community Update on Coronavirus

 Recently there has been emerging public health concern regarding an outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a new strain of coronavirus, 2019 Novel Coronavirus, in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. Stanford is actively monitoring the rapidly evolving situation with respect to the spread of the disease and potential impacts to the university. 

 At this time, the CDC and County of Santa Clara Public Health Department consider the risk of disease in the United States and the Bay Area, respectively, to be low. However, we are continuing to take precautions and have implemented requirements related to travel to China: 

 Stanford is restricting all travel to China. Requests for exceptions need to be fielded by a vice president, vice provost, or dean and then forwarded to the Provost’s Office for approval.


  • For all Stanford community members: if you or someone you live with has returned from mainland China in the last 14 days, we ask that you self-isolate, working or studying from home until 14 days have passed since your return date. This includes all individuals, including children, with or without symptoms. Individuals should monitor themselves for symptoms for the 14 days following their last day in China.



  • Stanford students: please contact Vaden Health Center for a phone consultation with a clinician. (650) 498-2336


Supervisors are strongly encouraged to adopt flexible work arrangements, permitting telecommuting and teleconferencing to allow employees to work from home during the designated self-isolation period. If your supervisor cannot identify work from home arrangements, the supervisor should consult with their local Human Resources Manager.

 Additionally, we strongly encourage all students and staff to continue to take precautions to prevent the spread of all infectious diseases in our community, including common illnesses such as colds and flu, which are currently circulating in high numbers in California: 


  • Stay home when sick.
  • Cough or sneeze into your tissue, sleeve, or arm. Do not use your hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Don’t share food and drinks.
  • Clean and disinfect shared surfaces and objects that are touched frequently (e.g. doorknobs, desks, phones).
  • If you can, avoid close contact with anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms.
  • Get a flu shot. We strongly recommend that everyone obtain seasonal flu vaccination. While it will not prevent 2019-nCoV, influenza is currently in widespread circulation in California, and initial symptoms can be similar to novel coronavirus. Any illness right now can increase anxiety and concerns.

 Currently, we have a FAQ available with answers to common questions regarding 2019 Novel Coronavirus, available at

 We will continue to monitor the situation and inform you of any additional public health recommendations. 

 This message was reviewed and approved by the Stanford Public Health Policy Committee.