The Collegian, the University of Richmond’s premier student newspaper, is reporting that there is currently an adenovirus outbreak occurring on the campus. On Friday, November 11th, the school’s health center sent out an email notifying the student body and faculty of the outbreak. Symptoms associated with the virus include sore throat, coughing and diarrhea. Lynne Deane, medical director of the school’s Student Health Center, emphasized that the virus was causing symptoms more severe and longer lasting than those stemming from the common cold, most frequently associated with picornavirus infection.
Now, the Student Health Center is struggling schedule appointments for all of the sick students. To combat the uptick in sick students this semester, the school unveiled two new initiatives: Dial-A-Nurse and Spider Care (named after their athletic teams' nickname, “The Spiders”). The former serves as a queue, allowing students who call the center to remain on the line if all nurses are busy, until one becomes available. Spider Care allows sick students to walk in and see nurses without appointments. Given the contagiousness and lack of a vaccine for the virus, Deane has emphasized the importance of good sanitation practices, especially frequent hand washing.
I guess the lesson everyone should take away from Ms. Deane is, whether on Richmond's campus, or not, "wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands."