May 04, 2009

Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff,

As the University continues to monitor the outbreak of swine flu (or influenza A H1N1) around the world, we have the following requests:

1. Please update your emergency contact information on myBucknell, via the ad in the top right corner of the myBucknell homepage. By doing so, you will provide the University with another means to reach you in the event that an emergency requires us to do so. Please note that we are only making this request at this time as a precaution given the seriousness of swine flu. At this time we know of no cases of swine flu at Bucknell or in the neighboring community.

2. Particularly for students: As you prepare to depart campus with the end of final exams, please advise all guests from off campus who might be visiting you NOT to do so if they are ill with flu symptoms or if there is any chance they may have been exposed to the flu. Based upon the advice of medical professionals, we ask that you take this precaution to protect you and the University community from this dangerous influenza. You may want to forward this message directly to your family or friends with such travel plans.

3. As you prepare to travel away from campus with the semester’s end, we encourage you to follow the recommendations of health officials at this especially sensitive time. As indicated on the special University website shared with campus on Friday (www.bucknell.edu/swineflu), health officials are especially concerned about swine flu because severe illnesses and death have occurred as a result of this virus and because it can be easily transmitted from one person to another. They recommend the following guidelines to help prevent the spread of swine and other flu viruses:

  • Wash your hands thoroughly and often with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizers. 
  • Cover your mouth and nose with your upper sleeve when you cough or sneeze.
  • Do not share utensils, drinks or personal care items; and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

4. Health professionals advise us to inform you that students who experience fever and other flu-like symptoms should immediately contact Student Health Services for advice regarding evaluation, medical treatment and self-care before seeking other care. Faculty and staff who are ill should stay at home, contact their health-care provider, and let their supervisors know that they cannot come to work. A medical evaluation is especially important if you are pregnant or have a health condition such as diabetes, heart disease, asthma or emphysema.

University officials, including the appropriate health officials, continue to meet on a regular basis to monitor the situation and maintain contact with appropriate local, state and federal agencies. We are following the recommendations for university communities that are provided by public health agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization. We will continue to issue advisories such as this one as the situation warrants.

Thank you for updating your emergency contact information and your attention to the above recommendations.

Sincerely,

Pete Mackey, Ph.D.
Vice President for Communications

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