Health Update: St. Catherine University Monitoring Coronavirus

About the 2019 Novel Coronavirus

St. Catherine University is closely monitoring the outbreak of a respiratory illness caused by the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).

The illness was first detected in Wuhan, China, with the majority of new cases continuing to be located in China. There are, however, a growing number of confirmed or potential cases of the virus in other countries, including the United States. There are no confirmed cases in Minnesota, according to health officials.

Available information about this virus suggests a low immediate health risk for the public. There is no need to cancel events, isolate, or avoid anyone because they have recently traveled to China. As always, we recommend that people stay home when sick, cover their cough, and practice good hand hygiene. These recommendations are especially important during cold and flu season.

University officials remain in frequent contact with local, state, federal and international health agencies, and will continue to monitor the situation.

If you have not done so already, get the seasonal flu vaccine. Though not protective against this coronavirus, the seasonal vaccine may help protect you against the flu, which is circulating on campus and is known to cause possible severe respiratory illness.

Coronavirus Symptoms

Current symptoms include mild to severe respiratory illness with fever, cough and difficulty breathing.

More to Know

  • St. Kate’s has policies and procedures to address a wide variety of emergencies including communicable diseases.

  • University staff closely follow the Centers for Disease Control guidelines, and have set in motion a number of strategies to identify and monitor any potential cases.

  • The World Health Organization has declared the novel coronavirus an international public health emergency.

  • If you have recently traveled to Wuhan or have been in close contact with a confirmed case of coronavirus, health officials encourage you to seek further guidance from your preferred health professional. Additionally, you may contact the St. Catherine University Health and Wellness Clinic at healthwellness@stkate.edu, or 651-690-6714.

You can help prevent the virus’ spread  

There is currently no vaccine to prevent 2019-nCoV infection, but by taking common-sense, everyday actions, we can all help decrease the spread of respiratory viruses:

  • 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.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • Stay home when you are sick.

  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Additional Resources

For more information about the 2019 Novel Coronavirus, please visit the following websites.