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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: Institutional Events and Transition to Virtual Learning

MEMORANDUM

FROM:  Valerie Montgomery Rice, MD President and Dean
TO:        MSM Community
RE:        Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: Institutional Events and Transition to Virtual Learning
DATE:   Thursday, March 12, 2020

Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM) is committed to the safety and well-being of our faculty, staff, students, patients, and community partners. We remain vigilant as we monitor the coronavirus (COVID-19) with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the State of Georgia, and the Atlanta University Center Consortium (AUCC). Morehouse School of Medicine has no suspected cases of coronavirus and we have not been notified of any member of the MSM Community with the virus.

COVID-19, like many other viral respiratory illnesses, appears to spread more easily between people in close quarters, such as with event crowds. Out of an abundance of caution, and in keeping with federal and CDC guidelines, we will modify, postpone, and/or cancel large scale Morehouse School of Medicine events scheduled through April 30, 2020. We will continue to evaluate our event plans as more information becomes available and will provide specific details as decisions are made. We also discourage departments planning any further large events until further notice.

Where possible, we are moving to online distance learning effective March 31, 2020, when all in-person classes will be cancelled. Campus will remain open and business will continue as usual, with employees reporting to work. Students will receive program specific information from their program leads.

Campus is remaining open and business will continue as usual, with employees reporting to work. For example, Cafe 720 and the library will be accessible. You will receive additional communications from MSM Human Resources regarding a modified employee absence policy for COVID-19 related illness and dependent care exceptions.

As domestic and international cases increase, all MSM faculty, staff and students are required to register their travel with MSM Human Resources: (404) 752-1713 or dbritt@msm.edu. Based on federal and state recommendations, we are restricting MSM-sponsored travel to countries that have been issued level 3 or 4 warnings from the U.S. Department of State.

We will continue communicating regular updates to the MSM Community. To stay informed of institutional updates, please visit our Coronavirus Advisory webpage and download the Campus Shield app from Google Play or Apple iTunes app store. To learn more about updates from the remaining Atlanta University Center institutions, see the enclosed AUCC Announcement.