April 29, 2009
In response to the growing concern over the swine flu (H1N1 influenza), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that U.S. travelers avoid all nonessential travel to Mexico. Accordingly, Cornell University strongly advises against travel to any country appearing on the CDC travel health warning list.
Please be aware that if you travel to any country on the CDC's list, you may not be allowed to return to the U.S. should travel restrictions such as canceled flights, border closings, isolation and quarantine be imposed. Furthermore, please note that local resources may be inadequate and Cornell University and its emergency travel assistance program may have limited ability to provide appropriate medical care and/or evacuation.
Cornell's concern is for the well being of both individuals who are traveling and the Cornell community, who could be exposed to the flu by returning travelers. The following factors should be weighed when any travel is being considered by students, faculty and staff:
- Critical timeframe: Is this travel a critical part of an academic program or professional obligation that must be completed at this time? Would rescheduling the travel create an undue hardship (e.g., make it impossible to complete a dissertation on time or take subsequent required courses as scheduled by the university, or delay graduation)?
- No alternate travel arrangements possible: Is this a one-time opportunity? Are there no alternate venues where the work could be completed at a satisfactory level?
- Significant personal financial loss: Would deferring travel create a significant financial hardship or lost academic or professional opportunity for the individual?
- Binding contractual obligation: Is the individual working under a contractual agreement that cannot be altered? Would delaying promised deliverables constitute a breach of contract?
Should you have any further questions regarding your decision to travel, please contact the office of the Vice Provost for International Relations (607-255-7993). Those at Weill Cornell Medical College can obtain information at 646-962-7233. For additional health-related information, please consult the Gannett Health Services' Gannett Health Services' website, as well as the CDC's resources online.