Coronavirus 2019-nCoV Updates

RISD will continue to monitor for new information about 2019-n-CoV coronavirus, including updated guidance from national and state authorities. This website is updated often, and the most recent update will appear below this message. Previous updates and frequently asked questions are linked below.

For any health concerns, students should contact the Office of Health Services (401-454-6625 or and faculty and staff should contact their health care providers.

Feb. 21, 2020: Coronavirus 2019-nCoV Update

Weekly Public Health Update from Health Services

To all students, faculty and staff,

RISD Health Services remains actively engaged in monitoring both local and global health trends, in order to share timely and factual information about COVID-19 (coronavirus) with the community each week. We continue to report no suspected cases of COVID-19 at RISD, or in our surrounding communities.

We have, however, noted an increased incidence of influenza (flu) in Health Services this week. This trend is consistent with local public health data and, while not a cause for significant concern, is an opportunity to remind folks of ways to safeguard their health.

  1. Hand washing is the single most effective way to prevent the spread of respiratory illness like the flu. Traditional soap and water is best, but alcohol-based hand sanitizer is a great option for when not near a sink.
  2. Flu vaccination is highly recommended for all persons, especially those living in close quarters (like dorms). Flu vaccines are available at most local pharmacies, including CVS at the Providence Place Mall.
  3. Cover your cough! Please protect those around you by avoiding close contact with others when you are sick. Cough or sneeze into a tissue or your elbow.
  4. Practice self-care this flu season. Remember to sleep, drink fluids and maintain proper nutrition. You can’t do your best work without taking care of yourself first!

Please note: many students have been asking about the use of masks. The CDC does not recommend the use of masks as necessary outside of medical facilities, however it is important to remember that many of our students wear masks as a cultural norm. Please do not assume students wearing masks are sick. We fully support all members of our community in making personal decisions about their health and safety.

For more information about the flu, visit the Health & Wellness website. Additionally, FAQs about COVID-19 (coronavirus) remain posted on our site.

Warm regards,

Kristin Gianelis, NP
Director, RISD Health Services

Past updates:

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