Coronavirus: UNC announces new travel restrictions as COVID-19 cases spread across the United States

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Friday, March 6, 2020
UNC implements travel restrictions in light of coronavirus concerns
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UNC is restricting travel within the United States, prohibiting travel to states were a State of Emergency has been declared.

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WTVD) -- The University of North Carolina announced new travel restrictions for students, faculty and staff as the novel coronavirus, more specifically known as COVID-19, continues to spread across the country and around the world.[br /][br /]UNC, along with Duke and NC State, previously [url HREF="" TARGET="" REL=""]suspended study abroad programs[/url] in countries dealing with COVID-19 outbreaks. Now, UNC is restricting travel within the United States.[br /][Ads /][br /]The restriction means University-affiliated travel won't be permitted to any state where a state of emergency related to COVID-19 has been declared. As of March 5, that includes California, Florida and Washington.[br /][br /]UNC is also discouraging any personal travel to these states. Anyone who chooses to go to these states may be asked to do a 14-day self quarantine off campus before returning.[br /][br /]The university has prohibited travel to China, South Korea, Iran and Italy; travel to Japan is being restricted. Any student, faculty or staff returning from these countries will have to complete the 14-day off campus quarantine.[br /][br /]"We did not come to these decisions lightly and did so with the health and well-being of our entire community in mind, while also following federal and state guidelines," Chancellor Kevin M. Guskiewicz said in an emailed statement.[br /][br /]These restrictions come a day after [url HREF="" TARGET="" REL=""]Wake County health officials downplayed the threat[/url] from COVID-19.[br /][br /]"At this time, there is no reason for the public to panic," Wake County Division of Public Health Director Chris Kippes said during a press conference Wednesday.[br /][br /][b]WATCH: Full Q&A with Wake County Public Health officials[/b][br /][media ID="5985434" /][br /][Ads /][br /][h2]COVID-19 effects[/h2][br /][br /]COVID-19 has infected more than 93,000 people globally and has claimed more than 3,000 lives.[br /][br /]According to the [url HREF="" TARGET="_blank" REL="nofollow"]Centers for Disease Control and Prevention[/url], there have been 80 confirmed cases in 13 states in America. A total of nine people have died from the virus.[br /][br /]The current global mortality rate from the virus is 3.4 percent, but experts said that number will continue to fluctuate (and most likely decrease) as the virus spreads).[br /][br /]North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Chief Medical Officer Dr. Elizabeth Tilson said most people who develop COVID-19 symptoms do not have major complications from the disease.[br /][br /]"What we are finding is that for COVID-19, the vast majority of people -- more than 80 percent--have minor symptoms," Tilson said.[br /][br /][b]RELATED |[/b] [url HREF="" TARGET="" REL=""]What to do if you think you have COVID-19 coronavirus symptoms[/url][br /][br /]Tilson said she expects the mortality rate will drop over time.[br /][Ads /][br /]"Older people, with underlying health conditions, seem to be at higher risk," Tilson said. "We see that children seem to fare very well. Only about 1 percent of the cases have been identified in children and seem to fare very well."[br /][br /][b][url HREF="" TARGET="" REL=""]CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE:[/url][/b][br /][b][url HREF="" TARGET="" REL=""]Here are 100+ products that may help protect you against novel coronavirus germs[/url][br /][url HREF="" TARGET="" REL=""]Universities cancel travel abroad programs amid coronavirus outbreak[/url][br /][url HREF="" TARGET="" REL=""]Symptoms, prevention, and how to prepare for a COVID-19 outbreak in the US[/url][br /][url HREF="" TARGET="" REL=""]From hand-washing to wearing masks, here's how to protect yourself[/url][br /][url HREF="" TARGET="" REL=""]Coronavirus fears cause global run on face mask sales despite CDC's advice[/url][/b][/b]