New Travel Restrictions to Italy and Iran Due to Coronavirus

March 1, 2020

Dear Members of the Brandeis Community,

As I indicated in my message from February 26, the university is tracking guidance from the State Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regarding travel restrictions. The CDC has three levels of travel notices: Watch Level 1 — Practice Usual Precautions, Alert Level 2 – Practice Enhanced Precautions, and Warning Level 3 — Avoid Non-essential Travel. On Friday evening, February 28, the CDC updated the list of countries at Warning Level 3. As a result, effective immediately, we are restricting all Brandeis students, faculty, and staff from traveling on official university business to Italy, Iran, South Korea and mainland China.

We recommend that individuals who are within 14 days post travel from Italy, Iran, or South Korea should self-monitor for symptoms of fever, cough, or any difficulty breathing for the 14-day period. If they experience any of these symptoms they should self-isolate and call their health care provider for guidance. Students should contact Brandeis Health Center. During business hours call 781-736-3677 or after hours call 781-239-1948. Please identify your recent travel and symptoms to the receptionist on the phone. Faculty and staff should contact their primary care provider and seek guidance. The U.S. government travel restrictions for those entering the U.S. from mainland China continue to remain in place.

These new university restrictions apply only to those traveling to Italy, Iran, South Korea and mainland China for university purposes. However, we strongly recommend that those who are planning travel to these countries for personal reasons reconsider such plans. We also continue to recommend avoiding travel to Japan as the CDC has an Alert Level 2 — Practice Enhanced Precautions travel warning still in place for Japan.

A working group of university leaders is communicating daily and meeting weekly to monitor the situation, refine short- and long-term contingency plans, and respond rapidly to emerging issues related to the coronavirus. Early this week we will provide a link to a new page on the Health Center website that will offer members of the community a central location where they can find information about health, travel, university operations and support services as they relate to the coronavirus outbreak. That webpage will be updated regularly as developments occur.


Lisa M. Lynch, Provost