Updated information on university's response to coronavirus

March 9, 2020 at 1:25 p.m.

Dear University of Oregon community,

As you may know, over the weekend, Governor Kate Brown declared a state of emergency. Although the number of known cases in Oregon is relatively small, the primary purpose of this declaration is to provide additional necessary resources and personnel to address the spread of COVID-19 and prepare the state to mitigate the outbreak. The state of emergency will allow the Oregon Health Authority to:

  • Create COVID-19 testing sites at more regional hospitals.
  • Bring in emergency volunteer healthcare professionals to add service, especially in rural communities.
  • Expand telemedicine, or remote care so that patients can be screened and, in some cases, treated without exposing more people to the virus.

In addition, the Oregon Health Authority has issued guidance and best practices for schools, colleges, and universities concerning the novel coronavirus in Oregon. OHA recommends that schools, colleges and universities consider all alternatives before closing in the event that a COVID-19 case is detected among students or staff. 

Finally, the Centers for Disease Control has recommended that people over 60 or who have serious chronic medical conditions avoid crowds and keep away from others who are sick, limit close contact with others, and wash hands often. Given this, the university recommends that people in these risk groups also limit travel, especially to locations with larger outbreaks.

The University of Oregon's Incident Management Team continues to work closely with local and state public health authorities to monitor the spread of the outbreak. In addition, we have increased cleaning per protocol and CDC recommendations in housing, limited international travel to high-risk countries, and activated teams to develop academic and research continuity plans. You can find the most current information on the UO's coronavirus webpage, which includes an FAQ and links to additional information about the novel coronavirus and messages related to the university's preparation and response.

General questions or concerns about anything related to the university and its response to COVID-19 can be submitted using this web form.


André Le Duc
Chief Resilience Officer and Associate Vice President
Safety and Risk Services