To: USC Community
From: Sarah Van Orman, MD, MMM, FACHA, Chief Health Officer for USC Student Health, Division Chief for College Health, Keck School of Medicine of USC
Date: November 16, 2020
Subject: COVID-19 Health Advisory—Widespread Transmission in Los Angeles
Surge in Los Angeles County
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health is advising all of the alarming increases in COVID-19 cases in the region; the risk of exposure is high. Cases among USC students and on-site employees are also increasing.
The new case total for Saturday, November 14, was the highest single-day total for Los Angeles County since the summer; please follow all face covering, hand hygiene, and physical distancing guidelines. Limit contact with others outside of your household for the next 14 days.
If you were around groups of people not wearing face coverings or physical distancing, please self-quarantine for 14 days and consider getting tested. USC students and employees who are working on-site on campus are advised to test through the surveillance population testing program (Pop Testing).
Western States Travel Advisory
On November 13, the State of California announced an advisory regarding travel into and from California, in conjunction with similar advisories from the state governments of Oregon and Washington. USC is directing its employees and students to comply with this advisory, as referenced below:
“1. Persons arriving in California from other states or countries, including returning California residents, should practice self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival. These persons should limit their interactions to their immediate household. This recommendation does not apply to individuals who cross state or country borders for essential travel.
2. Californians are encouraged to stay home or in their region and avoid non-essential travel to other states or countries. Avoiding travel can reduce the risk of virus transmission and bringing the virus back to California.”
For Students Traveling to a Winter Break Destination
- Test before traveling out of Los Angeles: USC students are advised to test through the surveillance population testing program (Pop Testing) before traveling to their Winter break destination, especially if out of state or out of the country. Test again upon your arrival at your destination, if possible. Remain at your destination for the duration of Winter break. Additional Spring semester testing information and requirements will be released shortly. Testing will continue to be available throughout the Winter break.
For Faculty and Staff
- Faculty and staff are strongly advised to follow State of California public health guidance and any local public health guidance that is issued for Los Angeles County and the City of Los Angeles. If travel is essential, employees who are working on-site on campus should also test before traveling and after return from travel. Additional Spring semester testing information and requirements will be released shortly. Testing will continue to be available throughout the Winter break.
For All USC Community Members
- Do not travel if you have any symptoms, including: chills or fever of 100 degrees or higher; loss of taste or smell; muscle soreness or headaches or fatigue; cough or runny nose or sore throat or congestion; difficulty breathing or shortness of breath; conjunctivitis (“pinkeye,” inflammation of the eye including redness, itching and tearing) along with feeling feverish; gastrointestinal symptoms (stomach upset, such as abdominal pain or diarrhea or nausea or vomiting).
If you develop any symptoms, please begin self-isolation. Contact your health care provider to arrange for symptomatic testing; contact USC Student Health to arrange for symptomatic testing if you are a USC student or employee working on-site on campus—Tel: 213-740-9355 (WELL), book online at https://usc.edu/myshr (go to the “Messages” section and select the “Request COVID-19 Screening” option). Keck Medicine of USC employees who have symptoms should contact Keck Medicine Employee Health at Tel: 323-442-5219.
For questions contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call Tel: 213-740-6291, 7 days a week until 9 p.m.