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UPDATED 26 Feb: Advice for students and staff who may have concerns about Wuhan Novel Coronavirus


UPDATED: 26/02/2020

We understand and appreciate that the current news coverage of the coronavirus outbreak is concerning and upsetting to follow. Students and staff may be worried about friends and family members in China, and our thoughts go out to all of those affected by the current situation.

The health, welfare and safety of all of our students and staff is our number one priority at Brunel. We hope that the information on this page reassures you that we are fully prepared and ready to act upon official advice as a University, and we are ready to help anyone that needs advice, support or guidance.

General Advice

The NHS advises that you call 111 if you have been:

  • to Hubei province in China in the last 14 days
  • to Iran, areas of northern Italy in lockdown or "special care zone" areas in South Korea since 19 February
  • to other parts of mainland China or South Korea, Thailand, Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia or Macau in the last 14 days and have a cough, high temperature or shortness of breath
  • to other parts of northern Italy (anywhere north of Pisa, Florence and Rimini), Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos or Myanmar since 19 February and have a cough, high temperature or shortness of breath
  • in close contact with someone with confirmed coronavirus

Do not go to a GP surgery or hospital, and please do not attend the university Medical Centre. Call 111, stay indoors and avoid close contact with other people.

For further information, please visit the NHS website.

We are encouraging everyone to continue to follow some basic hygiene rules, including:

  • Regular washing of hands
  • Maintaining good personal hygiene
  • Covering nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing
  • Disposing of any tissues in a bin
  • Thoroughly cooking eggs and meat
  • Avoiding contact with anyone showing signs of respiratory illness

There is currently no evidence of asymptomatic spread.

About the coronavirus:

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Several members of this family are  known to  cause mild respiratory disease, such as the common cold in people. This novel (or new) coronavirus, first identified in Wuhan in China, is different from the other members of this family and has led to a number of deaths. This novel coronavirus has recently been named COVID-19.

For more information, take a look at this video from the World Health Organisation (WHO).

What is the University doing about coronavirus?

The University is acting on advice from sources including the World Health Organisation (WHO); the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), the NHS and Public Health England. We have taken proactive steps to ensure that everyone has access to the latest advice.

We are monitoring the situation closely, and we have made plans to act quickly if the situation changes and we will provide further updates as necessary.

What is the risk to the UK?

The new coronavirus has been declared a global emergency by the World Health Organization (WHO), as the outbreak continues to spread outside China. Declaring a global emergency enables the WHO to coordinate efforts more effectively between countries.

The Public Health England assessment of the current risk is moderate. This does not mean we think the risk to individuals in the UK has changed at this stage, but that government should plan for all eventualities.

As of 25 February, a total of 6,795 people have been tested, of which 6,782 were confirmed negative and 13 positive. These figures now include the four cases from the Diamond Princess cruise ship. There have currently been 13 confirmed positive cases of the virus in the UK.

All university travel to China must be pre-approved by the Executive Board, and all non-essential travel will be suspended in line with FCO guidance.

Further advice and updates on the coronavirus situation are available from:

If you would like any further advice and information, please read our FAQs.​

We will keep you updated on this page as further information emerges. The next scheduled update will be in the next few days.

Reported by:

Press Office, Media Relations
+44 (0)1895 266867