Dear Hotel Business Partners:
Public health is closely monitoring an outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a new coronavirus (COVID-19) that developed in Wuhan, Hubei, China in December 2019. Human-to-human transmission of the coronavirus has been verified, but is limited in the United States. As a hotel that welcomes visitors from across the globe, we want you to be up-to-date on the most current information regarding quarantine guidance and cleaning practices.
As part of its response to this situation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has provided quarantine guidance for people recently returning from China. As of February 2, 2020 at 5 p.m. ET, there has been a mandatory 14-day quarantine of individuals returning from Hubei Province, China, taking place at their port of entry to the United States.
Those who travel from all other areas of China are required to self-quarantine (with public health guiding active monitoring) for fever and respiratory illness for 14 days after departure from China. Public health is in contact with travelers returning to Ohio from China upon notification from the Ohio Department of Health (ODH).
Please note that the CDC does not recommend any additional precautions for the general public at this time beyond the usual steps that everyone should always take to prevent illness and stay healthy (such as proper handwashing, covering coughs and sneezes with your arm, and avoiding exposure to others who are sick). The CDC continues to stress that risk is low for the general public.
Additionally, environmental cleaning and disinfection procedures should continue to be followed consistently and correctly during this time. Routine cleaning and disinfection procedures (e.g., using cleaners and water to pre-clean surfaces prior to applying an EPA-registered disinfectant to frequently touched surfaces or objects for appropriate contact times as indicated on the product’s label) are appropriate for COVID-19. Products with EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claims are recommended for use against COVID-19. If there are no available EPA-registered products that have an approved emerging viral pathogen claim for COVID-19, products with label claims against human coronaviruses should be used according to label instructions.
As a reminder, people feeling at risk can sometimes react out of fear in a way that unfairly singles out others, causing them emotional pain and embarrassment. Let’s fight this new public health concern with compassion and science, and with the understanding that you cannot tell if someone has a risk for spreading coronavirus by what they look like. It is important for us all to remember our commitment to treating everyone with a sense of dignity and respect.
We also ask employers to be flexible in allowing employees who may be required to self-quarantine due
to recent travel to work from home or take time off. We know from previous infectious disease outbreaks that this type of approach works and can dramatically reduce the spread of disease.
Public health will continue to closely monitor this rapidly changing situation and will provide further guidance as we receive state and federal updates. Public health continues to work with healthcare providers to ensure state and federal guidelines are communicated.
For additional information about coronavirus, please visit www.cdc.gov/coronavirus. For questions:
Columbus Public Health, Leslie diDonato at firstname.lastname@example.org
Franklin County Public Health, Mitzi Kline at email@example.com
Delaware General Health District, Traci Whittaker at firstname.lastname@example.org
Licking County Health Department, Olivia Biggs at email@example.com
Union County Health Department, Mary Merriman at firstname.lastname@example.org