Dear students,

I understand that many of you are becoming increasingly concerned about the evolving situation surrounding the novel coronavirus outbreak in the UK.

I would like to assure you that our University is following UK Government advice and the advice of Public Health England and Wales in relation to this issue and we will continue to do so. The Government and our health and social care systems plan extensively for events of this nature to ensure that the UK is well prepared to respond in a way that offers substantial protection to the public. The UK Government is following its Infectious Diseases Strategy and has published a robust four stage action plan for dealing with coronavirus and currently the UK is at the first containment phase.

While I understand the concerns of our staff and students, I want to reassure you all that your health and wellbeing remains our primary concern. The University’s Incident Management Team, which brings together colleagues from across the University, is working to ensure that we share the most up-to-date information with you. There are currently no confirmed cases of students or staff being affected by the novel coronavirus at Swansea University.

With that in mind, and following the current advice from the UK Government, our University remains open and running as normal. We are keeping the situation under constant review, are planning for a range of scenarios and are ready to take appropriate action as required.

I am aware that there is speculation in the media and on social media. I recommend that you take the time to go through the advice on the University website, which is regularly updated in line with the latest UK Government guidance. I also urge you to read student communications thoroughly so that you remain updated on the current situation.  As a reminder, our all communications are held centrally on the MyUni news site.

While our hard work behind the scenes to plan and manage this fast-moving situation may not always be visible, I can assure you we are continuing to work hard to safeguard our staff and students during this challenging time. In the meantime, please find some further information and sources of guidance below:

Health

The Department of Health and Social Care have launched a public information campaign focusing on handwashing. Please make every effort to follow this advice to ensure that you protect yourself and others.

Study

If your engagement with your studies is being affected by the novel coronavirus outbreak, we ask that you contact the Engagement Monitoring Team at the University as soon as possible at engagementmonitoring@swansea.ac.uk, please also copy in your College.

If you are on a Tier 4 Visa, this is unlikely to be affected at this current time, but the University will take advice from the Home Office as the situation evolves and will keep you informed.

Advice from the UK Government Department can be found here.

Department for Education Helpline

The Department for Education (DfE) has launched a new helpline to answer questions about coronavirus related to education.  This is available for staff, parents and students who can contact the helpline by telephone and email.

Phone: 0800 046 8687
Email: DfE.coronavirushelpline@education.gov.uk

The helpline is open from 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday.

Advice

The government will continue to monitor the spread of coronavirus and take further action as needed. You can find the latest information and advice on coronavirus  and the latest guidance for educational settings on the GOV.UK website.

Best wishes,

Paul Boyle

Professor Paul Boyle

Vice-Chancellor

Friday March 6th, 2020

Posted In: Messages, Welfare

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