Salisbury University plans for monkeypox ahead of new school year
SALISBURY, Md. – Monkeypox cases are on the rise, and with school starting back up officials want to be prepared in the event of an outbreak.
Especially with the school year right around the corner, Salisbury University officials tell me they aren’t too concerned. Following the COVID-19 pandemic they feel more equipped to handle health outbreaks better.
“College students, unfortunately, are at higher risk for most contagious diseases because many of them share rooms and live in smaller quarters,” says Dr. Sally Dowling, Vice President of Medical Affairs at Atlantic General Hospital.
Here on Delmarva, Salisbury University has a plan in place to keep its students and faculty safe.
“Preliminarily we want to educate, we want to communicate and we want to prevent so we want to send communications to the campus community letting them know what monkeypox is, what they should do if they think that they have it and the resources that SU will provide for them and the resources they will have to seek off campus,” says Jason Rhodes, Public Relations Director for Salisbury University.
Some of those resources at Salisbury include:
“Our student health team and our campus health team are working diligently on this as far as isolation and quarantine we are most likely going to ask that students if they do contract monkeypox quarantine at home if they’re able, if not the campus will hopefully be able to provide a small amount of quarantine and isolation housing that would be for students in extreme circumstances,” says Jason Rhodes, Public Relations Director for Salisbury University.
Health professionals at Atlantic General Hospital say though cases are on the rise – treatment for the virus is looking up.
“The biggest hindrance thus far was the vaccine availability last week the FDA did issue an EUA where the vaccine can be administered in smaller amounts intradermally versus IM which means we can stretch the doses that are available out to more people which will be helpful,” says Dr. Sally Dowling, Vice President of Medical Affairs at Atlantic General Hospital.
If you do contract the virus or suspect you have it on campus – doctors want you to reach out to your health care provider.
“Certainly, someone who finds out they have been in contact with someone who is later diagnosed with the viral infection should contact their health department or health care provider,” says Dr. Sally Dowling, Vice President of Medical Affairs at Atlantic General Hospital.
Officials at Salisbury University understand that students may be faced with other issues on top of the pandemic and monkeypox, so they are offering their students mental health services through their campus counseling center. Dr. Dowling encourages all schools to increase education surrounding monkeypox to all their students and staff.
Salisbury University is set to have a meeting later this week in preparation for a potential outbreak. The school will be sending information out to all students and staff before the start of the semester.