Update on the University response to coronavirus

Update on the University's response to coronavirus.

This article has since been updated here.

The University is continuing to closely monitor the global outbreak of coronavirus and to follow the advice of health authorities.

Coronaviruses are a large and diverse family of viruses that includes the common cold, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).  Early in January 2020 Chinese officials identified a new coronavirus or 2019-nCoV. Symptoms include fever, coughing and difficulty breathing.

The Ministry of Health has detailed health information here. The University has also got a page with further information about the coronavirus here.

The University is taking a precautionary approach and following the advice of the Ministry of Health. If you have recently been to Wuhan, Hubei province, or have been in close contact with someone diagnosed with the virus, you are at risk of contracting coronavirus. If this applies to you, please phone your GP Practice or Student Health for advice. You can also contact Healthline on 0800 611 116. In line with the Ministry of Health advice, we are now requesting that staff or students who have recently returned from Wuhan to self-isolate at home for a period of 14 days.

The University has robust and up-to-date procedures in place to manage events of this type, and our response can be scaled up as necessary.  We are working with Wellington University International, our Accommodation Service and other areas of the University to ensure full information and pastoral care is provided to new and returning students as well as staff on how to manage any flu-like illness in our community.

Wellington University International is in touch with current students in China to offer information and pastoral care. We will work with students on a case by case basis if they are facing any academic impact.

Student Health and Counselling (Mauri Ora) is coordinating the medical response across the University as well as being in close contact with external public health agencies. At this point it is an evolving scenario and updates will be provided on the website and through social media.

Important health advice

  • Follow best practices with hand washing and personal hygiene
  • Cover your mouth and nose when you sneeze
  • Stay home if you are unwell and phone your GP or Student Health for advice
  • If you are unwell, stay at home and avoid public gatherings and public places such as schools.


The University is following the guidance of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade advice,  which is advising New Zealanders to avoid non-essential travel to China.

Useful travel information can be found here