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MU Pauses Travel to China and South Korea Amid Coronavirus Concerns

MU is not allowing any new university sponsored travel to China and South Korea, according to an announcement Friday from Chancellor Alexander Cartwright.

In the announcement sent out to students, staff and faculty, Cartwright said that the suspension of travel to China and South Korea will also apply to any new faculty trips, with trips that have already been approved being considered on a case-by-case basis.

The announcement followed the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S Department of State issuing travel warnings for China and South Korea. MU international travel policy requires that university-sponsored travel be prohibited while these warnings are in effect.

The policy applies to both undergraduate and graduate students traveling internationally. This includes study abroad programs, internships, research, service-learning and volunteer opportunities, conferences, registered student organization activities, student groups affiliated with academic departments and other noncredit-bearing university programs.

MU also currently has a small number of students of in South Korea. The school has been in direct contact with the student’s parents and families, and is determining the best course of action for each individual.

MU is also encouraging students and staff to take preventative actions to prevent any further spread of COVID-19, sharing recommendations from the CDC which encourage washing your hands often and disinfecting frequently touched objects and services.

MU will also be making hand sanitizer more readily available throughout campus, and will soon start distributing individual-sized bottles of hand sanitizer in mid-March.

With no current vaccine to prevent COVID-19, the best ways to prevent is to “avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth,” Cartwright said.

The university is working closely to monitor the spread of the virus, Cartwright said in the announcement.

“While we know this new virus is concerning, it’s important to note that at this time Missouri has no confirmed COVID-19 cases,” Cartwright said.