Beloit College announces policy on SARS

Beloit College announces policy on SARS


BELOIT, Wis.—Given the strong international presence on the Beloit College campus each year and the extensive travel by faculty and staff during the summer, Beloit College has established a policy regarding the outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in certain parts of the world. President John Burris has presented guidelines and requested faculty and staff to indicate to the college health service if they have had contact with anybody known to have had SARS or have visited any of those areas where travel advisories from the World Health Organization or Centers for Disease Control are in effect.

The college’s policy and concerns developed in a series of recent meetings of faculty and staff, have also been outlined in a letter to all Beloit parents and members of the college community. To date, SARS has not been a problem on any U.S. campus. Furthermore, exit screening has been conducted for all international travelers, including visiting and returning students from SARS-affected areas.

The letter to parents and the community indicated that Beloit College is concerned that it be able to welcome students from all countries. “However, as are many institutions, the college is taking special precautions to assure the health and safety of the entire student body, the faculty or staff, and the community beyond the college.”

“In order to insure the community’s health, the college is following guidelines established by the American College Health Association in consultation with the CDC. Thus, we are asking students who have spent time in a SARS-affected area to spend the 10 days prior to the start of their academic program in an area unaffected by SARS. During this time, the students will be asked to monitor their health. Upon arrival on campus, staff from the Beloit College Health Center will examine them to make sure they are free of SARS symptoms.

“For new students, the 10-day period begins on August 5 and for continuing students on August 13,” which in each case is 10 days prior to the start of their respective programs. “Students who chose to spend the 10-day period on the Beloit campus will be housed separately from other students, their movement restricted, and their health monitored. Dean of the College David Burrows and Director of International Education Elizabeth Brewer indicated to parents that “the SARS epidemic is unpredictable. We at Beloit College all hope that no travel advisories will be in effect by August. However, at this time, we must make preparations as if travel advisories remained in effect.”

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