Wesleyan Issues Ebola Travel Advisory

Ebola is a rare and deadly disease caused by infection with one of the Ebola virus strains. Ebola can cause disease in humans and nonhuman primates. Ebola was first discovered in 1976 near the Ebola River in what is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Since then, outbreaks have appeared sporadically in Africa. (Photo courteously of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

Ebola is a rare and deadly disease caused by infection with one of the Ebola virus strains. Ebola can cause disease in humans and nonhuman primates. Ebola was first discovered in 1976 near the Ebola River in what is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Since then, outbreaks have appeared sporadically in Africa. (Photo courteously of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

Ruth Striegel Weissman, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, and Dr. Thomas McLarney, medical director of the Health Services Department, have issued an Ebola Travel Advisory. It reads:

The devastating outbreak of the Ebola virus in West Africa has caused pain and suffering on an almost unimaginable scale. It also has raised concerns about safe travel to and from that region. Even though this topic has receded from the headlines, Ebola remains a serious concern for travelers, and we would like you to be aware of the following update to Wesleyan policy.

We are asking members of the Wesleyan community to refrain from nonessential travel to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. This advisory is consistent with travel notices from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which has issued the highest level of warning for individuals to avoid nonessential travel there. To protect the safety of our community, please travel to these areas only if you have an urgent and essential need or have particular expertise. If that’s the case, please alert your department chair or supervisor, who should in turn alert the appropriate Cabinet officer. Please note that the Governor of Connecticut has imposed case-by-case quarantine restrictions for travelers returning to the state from Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

It is important to know that disease screening is being performed in the three affected countries for anyone planning to travel outside their borders. To date, none of our students are matriculating from any of these countries, and the risk at Wesleyan is close to zero. The most recent update from Wesleyan Health Services is available here.

Further information on Ebola and the devastating outbreak in Africa is available on the CDC website.

Weissman and McLarney ask the Wesleyan community to consider contributing to humanitarian relief efforts.