30th Marc 2020

prohibition signs with exclamation mark

To whom it may concern,
Due to a growing number of SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus infections I recommend special caution, including avoidance of mass events and large gatherings of people. Please follow and comply with the current recommendations from the following websites:

One should especially bear in mind the basic rules of hygiene – washing hands as often as possible, covering one’s nose and mouth while sneezing or coughing:

  • viruses are eradicated on contact with soap, and covering one’s nose and mouth while sneezing or coughing limits the spread of infections and thus protects the people around,
  • after using tissues, it is necessary to dispose of them immediately and wash one’s hands,   
  • it is recommended to carry antibacterial gel or tissues, which are an effective way of cleaning one’s hands.

Due to the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic threat, and the announcements by the Chief Sanitary Inspectorate and the World Health Organization (WHO) on declaring the state of emergency on an international scale, bearing in mind the duty to ensure safe and hygienic working conditions, I have decided to suspend until further notice all work-related trips by employees of Nicolaus Copernicus University to the countries with high virus incidence, particularly to regions where increased incidence has been reported, that is: China, Hong Kong, South Korea, Italy (especially the regions of Lombardy, Veneto, Piedmont, Emilia Romania and Lazio), Iran, Japan, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, Taiwan, France and Germany. The list of not recommended travel destinations is expected to grow.

The suspension also includes all ‘official’ trips by students and doctoral students. The Nicolaus Copernicus University recommends to cancel all planned visits by students (Erasmus exchange students among others), doctoral students and employees of foreign partner universities from the aforementioned countries with high incidence.  

The costs sustained by NCU’s staff as a result of the Rector’s decision which cannot be recovered (such as airline tickets), shall be refunded by the University at the employee’s request. Individuals planning private foreign trips are obliged to comply with the announcements and guidelines published by the Chief Sanitary Inspectorate, the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Science and Higher Education.

Students, doctoral students and NCU staff returning from countries with high incidence are excused from conducting classes and carrying our work duties at the University for the period of 14 days from leaving the hazard area. Individuals who have demonstrated no infection symptoms yet are recommended to remain at home and monitor their condition. This also applies to individuals who had contact with potentially infected people.  

  • Students are obliged to send a notification via e-mail to their teacher and the head of department/unit where classes are taught (Dean, Head of Doctoral College etc.) after returning from a country with high incidence. Academic teachers are obliged to move classes or tests to a different date and to allow them to be completed in a changed form.
  • Doctoral students and University staff are obliged to send a notification via e-mail to the head of the unit after returning from a hazardous region, so that an individual course of action could be determined.
  • The head of department/unit (Dean, Head of Doctoral College etc.) informs the Vice-Rector for Students Affairs and Staff Management about the number of students who come back from countries with high virus incidence.

Academic teachers are obliged to monitor the situation and notify their superiors about any potential threats.  

I wish to emphasize that the most important thing is to remain calm, avoid actions which are disproportionate to the situation and exercise rational prevention. Further information can be obtained by calling a 24/7 helpline of the National Health Fund at 800 190 590.