Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) - Information And Policy for

Month/Year Posted: 
July, 2003
Policy Number: 


The development of the apparently new viral infection Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) has been widely reported worldwide, and followed closely by the CSU system and HSU. The University has developed the following policy in response to the seriousness of the illness. This policy would be implemented in the unlikely event of a SARS case locally.


The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines for the university response to a possible SARS case. Information about SARS and the University's Emergency Management policies and procedures are outlined below.


The Chancellor of the California State University issued a memorandum on May 9, 2003, outlining the system's concern about the SARS situation, and directing campus presidents to ensure that Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations were met.


It is the policy of Humboldt State University that whenever there is an immediate or potential danger to life (including health and/or safety) and property, the University will take every possible action necessary to protect life and property. Regarding SARS, the university will follow CDC and World Health Organization (WHO) recommendations for institutions possibly hosting persons arriving in the United States from areas with SARS:

Further, other actions as necessary may be taken in accordance with CDC recommendations, Public Health law and policy, and the Campus Emergency Management Plan.


Information about SARS is maintained and updated at these locations:
CDC Recommendations for travel and schools
The CDC has formulated specific recommendations for schools, especially regarding travel to and receiving students and visitors from areas with community transmission. These travel policies will guide University personnel in planning international travel:
These policies will be followed for any cases of possible exposure:
SARS Emergency
A documented case of symptomatic exposure with SARS will be a campus emergency, and the campus emergency plan will be activated.
Essential Personnel
Essential personnel are employees designated by the University President or President's designee(s) who, by virtue of their employment responsibilities, provide services essential to the protection of life and property when an unplanned event, planned event, or emergency occurs that affects all or a portion of the persons at the university or any university property. This category is exclusive of staff who are asked by the Vice President and/or designee to work their usual schedule during an emergency.

Procedures For A SARS Emergency

Initial Response
If a suspected SARS exposure, with symptoms, occurs, the University Police department should be informed immediately. UPD will conduct or coordinate with other essential personnel a rapid needs assessment and communicate the findings to the appropriate designated authority to further ensure that the campus administration receives the information necessary to evaluate the need to close all or a portion of campus. It should be noted that some unplanned events or emergencies may dictate the need for a University Police Officer to exercise his/her police officer powers to direct persons to evacuate buildings or areas directly affected by a SARS incident for safety purposes.
When a SARS emergency occurs, the most senior University Police Officer on duty will notify the following university officials as soon as possible in the following order:
  1. Chief of Police (Emergency Operations Center Director)
  2. Emergency Operations Executive or designee
  3. University President or designee
  4. Medical Operations Department Director
Infection Control
Procedures for isolation and infection control will follow CDC guidelines:
Quarantine Plan
CDC recommendations for isolation and quarantine will be followed in cooperation with the Humboldt County Department of Public Health. Additional HSU Housing Services procedures will be implemented when such cases involve on-campus residents.

Distribution: All Faculty and Staff