February 11, 2020
TO: The Holy Angel University Community
I write to ask for your cooperation in ensuring the health and safety of the entire university community in light of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak that began in China and has now spread to Hong Kong, Macao, and 25 other countries, including the Philippines.
On January 30, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) determined that the rapidly spreading 2019-nCoV outbreak constitutes a Public Health Emergency of International Concern because of the human-to-human spread in multiple countries. Thus far, WHO has not declared 2019-nCoV as a global pandemic. To date, there are 34,883 confirmed cases of 2019-nCoV in 28 countries and economies, of which 3,419 are new cases. China, Hong Kong, and Macao, collectively, account for 34,582 (99.1%) of the total confirmed cases and 3,401 (99.5%) of new cases.
To date, the Philippines currently has three confirmed cases and 264 patients under investigation (PUI). The three nCoV-associated deaths in the Philippines consist of two PUIs and one confirmed case. Central Luzon has 30 PUIs, of whom three have been discharged (cleared). It is important to note that, at this time, Holy Angel University does not have a single PUI or confirmed case of 2019-nCoV.
There is no shortage of disinformation or fake news associated with 2019-nCoV. The University has begun circulating on social media information about how to keep ourselves healthy and safe; this information has been carefully vetted and approved prior to release. I also urge you to keep yourself informed by bookmarking and regularly visiting the following credible sites that provide daily or regular situation summaries about 2019-nCoV:
In an abundance of vigilance, Holy Angel University is implementing a number of precautionary measures, which will be presented in detail in the remainder of this Memorandum Circular.
Prevention at the Individual Level
The remainder of this Memorandum Circular will frequently refer to “influenza-like” or “flu-like” symptoms. By “flu-like symptoms” is meant fever (temperature of 38.0 degrees C or higher) and any or a combination of the following symptoms of respiratory illness: cold, cough, sore throat, or shortness of breath.
The Department of Health and other medical authorities have released several recommendations aimed at contracting 2019-nCoV. Let me reiterate them.
Preventive Measures Regarding Student Health and Safety
The Office of Student Affairs (OSA) and the Basic Education Department (BED) have instructed all class presidents to classify their classmates according to the following categories:
The University shall enforce the following protocols for these identified students:
(1) Students who have recently traveled to China, Hong Kong or Macao, and are now manifesting flu-like symptoms
OSA has also asked all accredited student organizations, college student councils, and other student groups to donate free improvised masks for their respective members and constituents who need them. Likewise, sewing classes in the Basic Education Department shall produce improvised masks for high school and elementary students. The University will put up a booth where students can get free improvised masks and access alcohol from dispensers.
Restrictions on International Travel
The severity of the 2019-nCoV outbreak varies across the 28 countries/economies afflicted by the virus. In the Philippines thus far, there is one confirmed case for every 36,038,872 persons. In comparison, there is one confirmed case for every 41,504 persons in China, whereas there is an average of one confirmed case for every 10,332,799 persons in the 25 countries outside China, Hong Kong, and Macao. Of the latter 25 countries, 13 countries have more than one confirmed case for every 10.3 million persons. These countries are as follows (in decreasing order of severity):
In view of the above statistics, the following restrictions on international travel are hereby promulgated and, unless otherwise indicated, take effect until March 31, 2020:
Preventive and Related Actions by University Units
The Campus Services and Development Office shall install permanent alcohol dispensers outside restrooms and other strategic spots on campus, including the University entrances for visitors. The Human Resource Management Office shall require all office heads to ensure that alcohol, soap and other disinfecting agents are accessible in their respective workplaces.
All faculty shall ensure that they are able to deliver course instruction for the remainder of the semester even without face-to-face meetings using Learning Management Systems (e.g., Aralinks, Canvas, Edmodo, Moodle, Neo), Google Classroom, Facebook, and other online methods.
Administrators shall review their scheduled activities—on- and off-campus—and recommend which shall push through. In addition to the provisions of the “Restrictions on International Travel” stated above, all travels and visits to the campus during the period ending April 30, 2020, are strongly discouraged. Exceptions to this restriction are site visits pertaining to accreditation, quality assurance, and legal and regulatory compliance.
The Campus Ministry Office shall observe the safety measures for liturgical and para-liturgical services that the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) has issued. The Institute for Christian Formation and Social Integration (ICFSI) has reiterated these guidelines in ICFSI Memorandum No. 4, Series of 2020, by which reference is incorporated into this Memorandum Circular.
The Marketing Office has created an HAU nCoV Bulletin on social media for regular updates, announcements and instructions to combat fake news and to help stem panic and mass hysteria.
Finally, the University President reserves the option to order a lockdown of the University if the situation warrants it. Should this scenario occur, all faculty members shall conduct online classes for all their subjects to avoid extending the academic year.
The above protocol seeks to help to significantly decrease the risk of 2019-nCoV to the Holy Angel University community. The protocol shall be continuously reviewed and improved as more information about the 2019-nCoV outbreak becomes available. We very much appreciate everyone working together to keep our university community healthy and safe, and sustain our mission of transforming our students into persons of conscience, competence, and compassion – all for the greater glory of God!
Mary, Comforter of the Afflicted, pray for us. Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us. Our Holy Guardian Angels, guide us and protect us. Laus Deo semper!
Luis María R. Calingo, Ph.D.
February 10, 2020
Memorial of Saint Scholastica, Virgin
Download PDF version here: http://bit.ly/2OEYVO8