UM System president outlines Ebola policy
COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri System notified employees Friday about its policies regarding Ebola.
University of Missouri System President Timothy Wolfe said in an email to the University of Missouri System community that, "to protect the health of the community, the UM System is prohibiting student, faculty and staff travel for university purposes (research, educational and business) to any nation identified in CDC Travel Health Notices, Warning Level 3, (currently Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea)," Wolfe said.
John Fougere, the chief communications officer of the UM System, said this policy means that those who do decide to travel will not be supported by the UM System.
"There's no restriction to anybody's freedom here, as far as if they want to travel somewhere," Fougere said. "Anybody in the university can travel to the nations mentioned in the CDC Travel Health Notice. What can't happen though, is if they go there, they will not be reimbursed for any university business."
Fougere said this policy was announced Friday to reinforce the policy currently in place for travel and CDC travel Health Notices.
"President Wolfe just wanted to reinforce what the travel policy is with regards to travel to some of the nations that are mentioned in the CDC travel health notices," Fougere said. "Specifically the three in West Africa where there has been Ebola."
Wolfe also noted that although it is very unlikely Ebola would come to Missouri, he explained it is important to be "vigilant and prepared" to ensure the community is safe.
He also said the restrictions could change with time.
"Additional countries may be added as the CDC advice changes," Wolfe said.
In October, KOMU 8 News reported University of Missouri Healthcare officials were preparing for the possibility of a threat in mid-Missouri.
To keep up to date on CDC warnings, visit the CDC website, which explains the different warning levels, as well as what countries are under warning currently.