Penn State will continue to update community on Ebola response

October 16, 2014

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – As the Ebola virus situation continues to evolve in parts of the United States, Penn State health professionals and administrators are closely following all recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Pennsylvania Department of Health. Ebola continues to pose little risk to the general population in the U.S. and Penn State officials are carefully monitoring the situation.

To date, all medical personnel at Penn State campuses with health services units have been briefed on the symptoms of Ebola and are in close contact with officials at University Health Services (UHS) at University Park. Campus medical professionals have been provided with instructions from the CDC and given instruction on taking a comprehensive travel history from any patient who presents with a fever. If anyone with a fever were to have visited a country where Ebola is prevalent within the last 21 days, they would immediately be isolated and sent to the hospital, and the Department of Health and CDC would be notified, in accordance with CDC guidelines.

According to medical experts, the longest it can take someone who has been exposed to the Ebola virus to show symptoms is 21 days -- after that, they are not considered to be at risk.

As announced on Oct. 8, Penn State has placed a temporary moratorium on official University travel to affected countries (including Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea – Nigeria was recently removed from the list of countries because the outbreak there has been contained). Employees who are concerned about business-related travel should contact their supervisor to discuss. Individuals who plan to travel either internationally or nationally should follow FAA and CDC guidance. Again, at this time, the virus poses no immediate threat to the general population.

At the University Park campus, the University Park Airport is following all guidance on training and procedures provided to the airline industry by the CDC.

Students who travel to an affected country during Thanksgiving or the holiday break will receive secure messages from University Health Services (UHS) asking that they complete a confidential health questionnaire based on guidelines from the CDC. UHS medical personnel will review the responses and communicate to the student on any further medical guidance. UHS will include the Campus Health Services in any messages that may impact an individual campus.

University officials are continuing to gather information and are in regular communication with the CDC and the Pennsylvania Department of Health. Additional updates will be provided to the University community as needed.

  • A closeup of the ebola virus

    As the Ebola virus situation continues to evolve in parts of the United States, Penn State health professionals and administrators are closely following all recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Pennsylvania Department of Health. Ebola continues to pose little risk to the general population in the U.S. and Penn State officials are carefully...

    IMAGE: CDC - Nat. Center for Infectious Diseases; Special Pathogens Branch

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated October 21, 2014