COVID-19 Update to Students, Staff, and Faculty- March 4 2020
Dear Students, Staff, and Faculty of Brighton College,
This email is an update on Brighton College’s response to the recent outbreak of COVID-19 around the world.
As always, the safety of our students, staff, and faculty is Brighton College’s number one priority, and we are actively reviewing this changing situation on a daily basis. To date, Brighton College has done the following:
- Formed a committee to discuss updates and plans;
- Recruited extra staff to clean and sanitize surfaces on a frequent basis;
- Posted information around campus on preventing the spread of illness (e.g. hand washing);
- Reached out to our students who may have travelled to China during this period to check on their well-being, and encouraged students, staff, and faculty who were ill to stay at home;
- Emailed students, staff, and faculty updates, including links to more information from public health officials;
- Prepared a plan of action for the College in the event that further response is necessary.
As of March 4, 2020, the Public Health Agency of Canada advises that the risk to Canadians remains low. However, it is also advised that individuals be prepared. This includes stocking up on food and supplies that may be needed in the event that you and/or your family members are unable to leave home for a period of time (e.g. prescription medications).
What are the recommended health and safety precautions for individuals?
The Public Health Agency of Canada recommends that individuals take the following precautions:
- Wash your hands frequently throughout the day for a minimum of 20 seconds with soap and water. Why? Washing your hands with soap and water physically removes bacteria and viruses. If you cannot wash your hands with soap and water, using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer is the next best option.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with your hands.Why? Hands touch many surfaces which can be contaminated with the virus. If you touch your eyes, nose or mouth with your contaminated hands, you can transfer the virus from the surface to yourself.
- Avoid close contact with others who are sick or who have recently travelled from an affected area
- Maintain social distancing. Do not shake hands with others.
- Be cautious in crowded places: e.g. public transit, shopping malls, etc. Be aware of the people around you and any surfaces that you touch. If someone near you is coughing or sneezing, walk away from them to avoid breathing in droplets that may contain viruses. If you touch something that others may have touched (e.g. door handles, railings, elevator buttons, etc.), do not touch your face, mouth or eyes.
- Practice proper cough and sneeze hygiene to prevent the spread of illness. When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue – discard the tissue immediately into a closed bin and clean your hands with soap and water. Why? Covering your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing prevents the spread of germs and viruses. If you sneeze or cough into your hands, you may contaminate objects or people that you touch.
- Have supplies to last two weeks of isolation, including food and prescription drugs, should the need arise.
- Avoid unnecessary travel. Hold virtual work meetings instead of traveling, especially internationally. Elderly and those with an underlying condition such as diabetes or heart disease may want to avoid travel.
- People who have recently traveled from hotspots such as Iran or Hubei province in China should self-isolate at home and not go out in crowds.
What should I do if I feel sick?
Stay home from work or school if sick.
Students: Communicate with your instructor via email or Canvas. Arrangements regarding missed class time, assignments and exams, may be possible on a case-by-case basis.
Staff and Faculty: Communicate with your supervisor and Human Resources regarding missed workdays.
Anyone who is concerned that they may have been exposed to, or is experiencing symptoms of COVID 19 should contact their primary care provider, local public health office, or call 811.
By calling 8-1-1, you can speak to a health service navigator, who can help you find health information and services; or connect you directly with a registered nurse, or health professional. For more information, visit:https://www.healthlinkbc.ca/services-and-resources/about-8-1-1
If you are going to see a doctor in person at a clinic, call the clinic ahead of time so that they can prepare for your visit. Inform the clinic of any recent travel or close contact with others who have recently travelled.
Where can I find more information about COVID-19, including symptoms, health precautions, travel precautions, and regular updates on the situation in Canada?
Visit the Public Health Agency of Canada’s FAQ: https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/frequently-asked-questions.html
Brighton College will post updates on our website: www.brightoncollege.com as the situation changes over time.
Brighton College Administration