UW-Eau Claire prepares for Coronavirus threat

Local News

As the spring semester is set to start next week at University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, concerns over Coronavirus are being raised.

The university sent an email to students and staff saying it is monitoring any potential threat as 165 incoming and current students from China will be attending classes at the campus.

UW-Eau Claire Risk Management and Safety Director, Tim Boehnen said that they are taking the steps needed to learn as much about the new virus as they can.

“Our department, with risk management, that’s what we do. We analyze the risks and threats to our community and then what we have to do. What are the smart things we can be doing to protect our community?” said Boehnen.

But Boenen says that as far as the specific threat to campus, it isn’t a big concern at this moment.

“We don’t see any higher risk levels here than we do anywhere else in the world and that we continue to monitor the situation and we’re talking to the Eau Claire County Health on a regular basis.”

The school is making sure any questions that students have are being addressed properly.

“County health has been a great partner for us. They advise our student health services on any concerns, making sure that we are prepared that we do have a plan. If the virus did happen to come here then we’re ready for it,” Boehnen said.

But the university says it’s number one concern is to keep an inclusive environment on campus for all students.

“Our number one way by handling that is by education,” said Boehnen.

Boehnen says they are doing this by providing the correct information.

“There are travelers of all nationalities that have contracted the virus and it has a lot more to do with where you’ve traveled and where you’ve been, than necessarily your origins.”

The Risk Management and Safety department at UW-Eau Claire will be sending out another email to students when spring semester starts on Feb. 3.

The email will cover more concerns presented and have information from these findings, as well as information provided by the Eau Claire City-County Health Department.

The UW System says they have put a team of experts together to compare data both from the state health department and the Centers for Disease Control.

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