Coronavirus FAQs

Murdoch University is monitoring the impact of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) closely and following the latest advice issued by the Federal Government. The situation is evolving and the University has formed a dedicated team to coordinate Murdoch University’s response.

The following frequently asked questions provide the latest advice for staff and students. These FAQs will be updated as new information becomes available.

Update: Thursday 20 February

The Australian Government has advised that it will extend existing restrictions on travel from mainland China to Australia for a further week from Saturday 22 February. The decision will be reviewed weekly by the Australian Government but means the restrictions are now in place until at least Saturday 29 February 2020.

Murdoch University encourages students and staff to follow the latest advice from the Australian Department of Health and the WA Department of Health.

We will continue to closely monitor the situation and will update students and staff when new information becomes available.

  • What is coronavirus?

    Information about the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), its symptoms and preventative measures that can be taken are available on the Federal Government’s Department of Health website.

  • What is Murdoch University doing about the 2019 Novel Coronavirus?

    We have been monitoring the situation closely and following the latest advice issued by the Federal Government. Given the situation is changing regularly, Murdoch’s senior staff will coordinate the University’s response on a continuing basis.

    Information relevant to Murdoch University staff and students is available on this page, via the student portal and on the staff intranet.

    If staff require support, they should talk to their manager. If you are concerned about a family member or loved one who has been informed by health authorities that they may have the novel coronavirus and you are feeling distressed or concerned, you should contact Murdoch’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provider.

    Students should contact Murdoch University Health: Counselling Service on 9360 1227. Medical questions can be directed to the Murdoch University Health: Medical Service on 9360 7333. Service information, contact details and instructions on how to make an appointment are provided in the MurdochSafe app.

  • Are there any confirmed cases of coronavirus at Murdoch University?

    The University has not been advised of any confirmed or suspected cases of the coronavirus at any Murdoch University campus.

  • How exposed is Murdoch University to the risk of coronavirus?

    There are no confirmed or suspected cases of the virus at any Murdoch University campus and we are following all of the latest advice from the Federal and State Governments. We are communicating with staff and students as the latest information becomes available.

  • Can I attend the University?

    The Australian Government has advised that it will extend existing restrictions on travel from mainland China to Australia for a further week from Saturday February 15. The decision will be reviewed weekly by the Australian Government but means the restrictions are now in place until at least Saturday 22 February 2020.

    Murdoch University encourages students and staff to follow the latest advice from the Australian  Department of Health and the WA Department of Health.

    We will continue to closely monitor the situation and will update students and staff when new information becomes available.
    The Federal Government has advised that students or staff cannot attend university if they fall within one of the following scenarios:

    • If they have travelled from Hubei Province within the past 14 days, they must isolate themselves until 14 days have elapsed after the time they left Hubei Province.
    • If they have left, or transited through, mainland China on or after 1 February 2020 they must isolate themselves until 14 days after the time they left China.
    • If they have been in close contact with a confirmed case of novel coronavirus, they must isolate themselves for 14 days after they last had contact with the confirmed case.

    Staff or students who have recently travelled to China can attend university only under the following scenarios:

    • If they have travelled from other provinces of mainland China (and have not been in Hubei province) and arrived in Australia prior to 1 February 2020.
    • If they have only been to Hong Kong, Macau or Taiwan.

    Furthermore, Murdoch University advises that if you have been in China in recent weeks and you are feeling unwell or are concerned about your health, we recommend you remain at home for 14 days and follow the advice of the WA Department of Health and the Federal Department of Health.

    We will continue to closely monitor communications from the Department of Health, and will update staff and students when necessary.

  • What should I do while I am self-isolated?

    People who are recommended to be isolated should not attend public places, in particular work, school, childcare or university. Only people who usually live in the household should be in the home. Do not allow visitors to enter. Where possible, get others such as friends or family, who are not required to be isolated to get food or other necessities for you. If you must leave the home, such as to seek medical care, wear a surgical mask.

  • My ability to return to Murdoch University or commence my studies has been affected because of travel restrictions. What should I do?

    You should contact us immediately at ncvsupport@murdoch.edu.au

  • Can I still travel to China for work or leisure?

    The Federal Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) recommends Australians do not travel to China. DFAT has raised its overall travel advice for China to ‘do not travel’, due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus and travel restrictions that are now in place.

    Chinese authorities have restricted travel for parts of the country and may extend these restrictions at short notice. Travellers may be quarantined due to their health condition or previous location.

    You can read the complete advice on the Smartraveller website.

  • Where can I get more information?

    A dedicated page containing the latest advice from the Department of Health has been created on the Intranet. We will continue to closely monitor communications from the Department of Health and will update staff and students when necessary.

  • What if I have a friend or family member who is immunocompromised?
    Murdoch University strongly supports the wellbeing of our students and staff and recognises that we have a community that has diverse cultures, families and experiences.  All of these are considered in our planning to make Murdoch a safe and supportive learning environment for all.  

    In relation to the coronavirus we are closely following the advice of the Australian and Western Australian Health Departments in the appropriate management of the current situation and have a high-level team taking a range of actions in line with this advice.  

    While there are currently no confirmed cases of coronavirus in Western Australia, Murdoch has plans in place should this occur and any actions deemed necessary would be taken and communicated to all students and staff at that time.  

    You would also be aware that travel to and from countries currently impacted is highly restricted as various governments attempt to prevent the spread of this version of the coronavirus as this is a global situation.  We provide advice and support to all our students, including those who may be at a higher risk to ensure that they are safe and well.

    You are at no greater risk of exposure to the virus if you attend Murdoch University than if you were to attend any other public place such as a shopping centre or train station. With that in mind, it is up to you to determine what course of action you choose to take around your movements. 
  • I am worried about my family and friends in China. Who can I talk to?

    If any students are concerned about a family member or loved one who has been informed by health authorities that they may have the novel coronavirus and you are feeling distressed or concerned and require support, please contact Murdoch University Health: Counselling Service on 9360 1227. Medical questions can be directed to the Murdoch University Health: Medical Service on 9360 7333. Service information, contact details and instructions on how to make an appointment are provided in the MurdochSafe app.

  • I am a tenant, contractor or visitor who needs to visit Murdoch University for work. What do I need to do?

    The advice on whether you can attend the University campus applies to all tenants, their staff, contractors and visitors to Murdoch University.

    The Federal Government has advised that you cannot attend the University in any capacity if you fall within one of the following scenarios:

    • If you have travelled from Hubei Province within the past 14 days, you must isolate yourself until 14 days have elapsed after leaving Hubei Province.
    • If you have left, or transited through, mainland China on or after 1 February 2020, you must isolate yourself until 14 days after leaving China.
    • If you have been in close contact with a confirmed case of novel coronavirus, you must isolate yourself for 14 days after last contact with the confirmed case.

    Furthermore, Murdoch University advises that if you or any of your staff have been in China in recent weeks and you are feeling unwell or are concerned about your health, we recommend you remain at home for 14 days and follow the advice of the Department of Health in Western Australia and the Australian Department of Health.

    Murdoch University is also asking all of our tenants and contractors to:

    • confirm the recent travel history of all of your staff who work at any Murdoch University campus or facility.
    • advise the University immediately upon becoming aware of any tenant, staff member, contractor or visitor to your business falls within the scenarios requiring isolation (specified above).
    • be alert to the symptoms which include (but are not limited to) fever, cough, sore throat, fatigue and shortness of breath.
    • help prevent the spread of the virus by practising good hand and sneeze/cough hygiene.
  • Am I restricted from attending Murdoch University if I am travelling (or have travelled) to Australia from a country other than China?

    Not at this stage. The Federal Government has been specific in the advice it has provided restricting travel to Australia.

    Currently, staff and students cannot attend university if they fall within one of the following scenarios:

    • If they have travelled from Hubei Province within the past 14 days, they must isolate themselves until 14 days have elapsed after the time they left Hubei Province.
    • If they have left, or transited through, mainland China on or after 1 February 2020 they must isolate themselves until 14 days after the time they left China.
    • If they have been in close contact with a confirmed case of novel coronavirus, they must isolate themselves for 14 days after they last had contact with the confirmed case.

    Staff or students who have recently travelled to China can attend university only under the following scenarios:

    • If they have travelled from other provinces of mainland China (and have not been in Hubei province) and arrived in Australia prior to 1 February 2020.
    • If they have only been to Hong Kong, Macau or Taiwan.

    No restrictions currently apply for staff and students travelling from other countries.

    Murdoch University will continue to monitor and adjust these measures pending any changes to advice issued by the Federal and State Governments.