Coronavirus: Student Safety & Responsibilities

28 January 2020

March 12, 2020 Update

Please be aware of the steps you should take in the event you believe you may have been in contact with a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19.

All information regarding symptoms, treatment, and how to protect yourself can be found on the Ministry of Health homepage.

Importantly, if you are experiencing symptoms, do not attend a clinic or a hospital Emergency Department.

Contact Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000 or your local public health unit.

Local Public Health Unit details.

March 11, 2020 Update

The University of Toronto is working to address concerns related to COVID-19.

Everyone has the ability to help reduce the impact of COVID-19 on our community. The most effective things you can do are:

  • Wash your hands frequently with warm water and soap for at least 15 seconds and use alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Sneeze or cough into your arm or sleeve, not into your hands
  • Stay home if you feel unwell
  • It is important to continue to check travel and public health advisories and the University of Toronto’s website as this is an evolving situation.

Since we are encouraging students to stay at home if unwell, the University is temporarily suspending the need for a doctor’s note or medical certificate for absences because of cold or flu-like symptoms, or due to self-isolation requirements.  Instead, students need to record these absences through the Absence Declaration tool on ACORN. The tool can be found in the ACORN Profile and Settings menu.  Record each day of your absence as soon as it begins, up until the day before you return to classes or other academic activities. The University will use this information to provide academic accommodation and to monitor overall absences.

Absences for other illnesses should continue to be documented through the Verification Of Illness (VOI) form and normal divisional process.

While the University will make every effort to provide needed academic accommodation, students are responsible for meeting course requirements as determined by your instructors.

IMPORTANT: Please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions on COVID-19.

To receive emergency messages from the University on your mobile device, we encourage you to provide additional contact information in the UTAlert system.

The University’s primary concern continues to be the health and safety of all members of the University community. Please continue to check the University’s homepage for updates on U of T’s COVID-19 preparations.

March 5th 2020 Update

With the increasing number of countries affected by COVID-19, the Faculty of Nursing (as well as other University of Toronto Health Science Faculties) is adopting procedure changes for students travelling internationally for any kind of travel, professional or personal.

Upon return to Toronto, all Faculty of Nursing learners who have travelled outside Canada must report to the Occupational Health Department at their clinical practicum sites for assessment before assuming clinical practicum educational activities.

Given that global information regarding COVID-19 is changing rapidly, learners who have travelled outside Canada may be quarantined and unable to participate in their practicum experiences for 14 days, which could lead to lost educational time that may need to be made up at a future date. Learners who are quarantined are encouraged to continue their course learning activities through remote QUERCUS access.

Please consider the impact of non-essential travel outside of Canada. During this time of heightened concern, the Faculty will do its utmost to support learners and continue educational programs as best as possible while fulfilling our obligation to employ wise practice in public health and safety.

University of Toronto Corona Virus FAQs.

If you want to explore further resources, please check the following websites:

The University of Toronto and our hospital partners are working closely together to optimize the management of the Coronavirus concerns across our system. 

While health officials note the risk of contracting the virus remains low, we must all be prepared to safely deal with sick and highly infectious patients. We want to ensure that our students are kept safe and patients are kept safe while students are performing their duties.

The expectation of the Faculty of Nursing is that all student learners will uphold their professional obligation to comply with hospital/health care agency requirements for providers, which includes the Faculty of Nursing students in both our undergraduate and graduate nursing programs. Students have been advised on hospital requirements including mask fitting and staying home while sick. 

International Visiting Students

Students who are from affected countries (China, Hong Kong, Iran, Japan, Northern Italy, Singapore, South Korea), are no longer be able to complete electives at U of T at present time.

All other international visiting students will be provided with information on coronavirus screening prior to their arrival. Students who are symptomatic prior to arrival at their clinical site will be asked to remain at home and contact Telehealth Ontario (1-866-797-0000), your health-care provider, or local health authority.  Inform them about your symptoms and travel history.

Asymptomatic students will register at their elective sites but will be informed that further screening protocols may occur as per the site’s occupational health policies.