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March 4, 2020

Dear members of the Tufts community,

The rapid spread of COVID-19 around the globe has understandably prompted concerns within our community. I want to assure you that we are actively monitoring the situation and taking all necessary steps to protect the health, safety and well-being of our community members while ensuring the continuity of our academic and research mission. Executive Vice President Mike Howard is leading a university-wide coordinating committee to ensure that we take a comprehensive, proactive approach to our response to this complex and rapidly evolving situation. He has appointed academic and administrative leaders from across the university to lead our planning processes on salient issues ranging from medical and public health concerns to continuity planning for education, research, clinical operations, student life, and operations. Provost Aubry, my senior leadership team, and I are deeply engaged with these issues in collaboration with the Schools and Divisions.

It is important to note that no members of the Tufts community have been identified as having the coronavirus, and we continue to be informed that the current risk to the Tufts community remains low. We are in direct communication with our overseas staff and students who are studying abroad this spring and have made them aware of advisories on travel and resources available to them. We continue to remain in close communication with them throughout the duration of this global outbreak. In addition, Tufts Global Education has posted a FAQ to address the most common study abroad-related questions.

I encourage you to regularly check which we will update regularly. I also would urge all community members to stay informed via trusted sources such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which has extensive and reliable information on COVID-19. And I ask you to take care of yourself and your fellow community members by practicing good hygiene: wash your hands frequently, cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, don’t share food and drinks, and stay home if you are not feeling well.

Finally, I want to extend a special note of consideration to members of our community whose family, friends and loved ones might be dealing directly with the impact of COVID-19. You should know that we are keeping you in our thoughts, and that if you need support or would like to speak with someone, there are counseling resources available to students through Counseling and Mental Health Services on the Medford/Somerville and Boston SMFA campuses and through Talk One2One Student Assistance Program for the Health Sciences campuses. Students can also get support through BetterHelp, iHope, and the University Chaplaincy. Faculty and staff may seek support through Tufts’ Employee Assistance Program at any time.

Thank you for taking care of yourselves and each other, and for keeping yourself informed during this uncertain time.

Best wishes,

Tony Monaco