MEMORANDUM TO: All members of the University Community
FROM: Bill Gibson, Human Resources Advisor (Health and Safety)
DATE: April 1, 2003
SUBJECT: SARS information and travel outside of Canada
With daily updates in the media about the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), students, faculty and staff have come forward with questions. As the Peterborough County-City Health Unit is currently referring to Health Canada as a guide for local response to SARS, we recommend that you look at the Health Canada Web site www.hc-sc.gc.ca for information about the illness. The Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care is providing frequent updates on measures to protect the public at http://www.health.gov.on.ca. A Web site dedicated to information about SARS has been set up at www.sars.gc.ca and an InfoLine has general information about the condition at 1-888-668-4636. If you feel you have any of the symptoms associated with SARS, please do not go in person to Health Services at Trent; instead call Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000 and you will receive instructions.
If you have plans for travel abroad, the University recommends that, before travelling to any country, all students, faculty and staff check for travel warnings on the Web site for the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFAIT) at www.dfait-maeci.gc.ca . The Office of Research and Graduate studies also provides links from its home page for country-by-country information at www.trentu.ca/research .
At this time, Health Canada and the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) recommend that Canadians defer travel, until further notice, to the City of Hanoi, Vietnam; the People's Republic of China including the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region; Singapore; and Taiwan. This advice is due to the mounting concern about transmission of the SARS agent in non-hospital and community settings in these areas.
Health Canada and DFAIT also recommend alternate routing be considered, when possible, if a traveller is transiting through the People's Republic of China including Hong Kong Special Administrative Region; City of Hanoi, Vietnam; Singapore; or Taiwan. Faculty and staff are asked to please heed the advice of DFAIT and Health Canada.
Any updates from the University with regard to SARS will be faxed to all departments and sent via broadcast email.
Posted April 2, 2003