Student and Staff Wellbeing

Coronavirus / Covid-19 - Updated Information

Coronavirus / Covid-19

According to the latest Public Health England advice:

Anyone returning from the following Category 1 countries must immediately self-isolate even if they don't have any symptoms and call NHS 111 to inform of recent travel.

If you are told to self-isolate, help us to support you by emailing  Wellbeing consultancy

Category 1 countries/areas

  • Wuhan city and Hubei Province
  • Iran
  • Daegu or Cheongdo (Republic of Korea)
  • Any Italian town under containment measures

Anyone returning from any of the Category 2 countries do not need to undertake any special measures, but if they develop symptoms they should self-isolate and call NHS 111.

If you are told to self-isolate, help us to support you by emailing  Wellbeing consultancy

Category 2 countries/areas

  • Cambodia
  • China
  • Hong Kong
  • Italy: north
  • Japan
  • Laos
  • Macau
  • Malaysia
  • Myanmar
  • Republic of Korea
  • Singapore
  • Taiwan
  • Thailand
  • Vietnam

Staff and students who are planning to travel to any of these countries must seriously review the business need to travel and consider making alternative arrangements.

In all instances staff and students should review their travel risk assessment and check FCO/PHE and in country health advice.  Members of the University who feel anxious about visiting any of the countries above should not feel obliged to do so, the University will of course support them.

You should not be undertaking any university business in China or any of the category 1 areas unless approved by your Faculty PVC. If, for any reason, colleagues believe travel to or from these areas is essential, they must agree this with their PVC and the Occupational Health and Safety Service.

The University has taken the precautionary decision that colleagues and students should avoid all but essential travel to Hong Kong and Macau. This is ahead of Foreign and Commonwealth Office guidance, but takes into consideration the high risk of disruption to both business and travel at the present time.

The FCO advice can be found here and we urge you to check this regularly for updates.

The University’s International Office is in contact with all students on placement in the region and staff to provide financial and logistical support to leave the country. 

The University's Emergency Management Team continue to meet frequently and are closely monitoring the situation with local partners and those overseas.

In light of concerns around coronavirus, our Vice-Chancellor, Professor Chris Day has written to the University community to reinforce the importance of our inclusive ethos and to call for empathy and kindness. You can read his email here

Advice for travellers

Advice for travellers from Category 1 Areas

If you have travelled from a Category 1 area to the UK you should immediately:

•          stay indoors and avoid contact with other people as you would with the flu
•          call the NHS on 111 to inform them of your recent travel to the area

Please follow this advice even if you do not have symptoms of the virus.


Advice for travellers from Category 2 areas

This advice applies to travellers who have returned to the UK from any of these areas in the last 14 days and develop symptoms of cough or fever or shortness of breath, you should immediately:

•          stay indoors and avoid contact with other people as you would with the flu
•          call the NHS on 111 to inform them of your recent travel to the country

Please follow this advice even if your symptoms are minor. Latest advice can be found on the PHE website.

If you are told to self-isolate, help us to support you by emailing  Wellbeing consultancy

Staff who are told to self-isolate should inform Occupational Health (please note this is an internal link) 


Students expressing concerns for themselves or loved ones regarding the virus should be directed to the Student and Staff Wellbeing Services or call 0191 208 3333.

If you are concerned or need to be absent due to clinical advice then students should notify by email Wellbeing consultancy and staff should contact Occupational Health (please note this is an internal link).


If you require advice regarding insurance because of coronavirus/Covid-19 and you are abroad, or because you are a staff or student member planning a University trip, please contact Kelly Lovelock, the University’s Insurance Officer in the first instance.

She can be contacted by email or Tel: 0191 208 6520.

Please have any trip specific or other relevant information available.

Otherwise, please seek insurance assistance from the AIG insurance website adding the policy number or download the AIG app in the normal way.

Travel Advice can also be obtained by contacting the Occupational Health and Safety Service (please note this is an internal link).

If you have any visiting guests from affected areas, please contact the International Office to discuss your plans.


What can I do to avoid coronavirus?


  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • put used tissues in the bin immediately
  • wash your hands with soap and water often – use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell
  • If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing seek medical care early - in the UK call 111 - and share previous travel history with your health care provider;


  • do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean

More advice from the NHS can be found here and advice from Public Health England can be found here.

Newcastle Hospital Information

Newcastle hospital is one of five specialist hospitals in the country and is a centre for treating coronavirus which is routine procedure.

The risk to individuals in the UK has not changed at this stage and we recommend following Public Health England updates here.

WHO are categorising this as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern, which means the WHO can now provide support to poorer countries that may not be capable of screening and treating the population themselves. 

*This statement will be regularly updated as the latest advice from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), World Health Organisation (WHO) and Public Health England (PHE) and other sources becomes available*

Updated on 26.02.20