Message sent on behalf of Fabrice Labeau, Deputy Provost (Student Life and Learning)


Dear McGill colleagues,

Although Public Health Agency of Canada maintains that the coronavirus poses a low risk to the public health of Canadians, a team of senior McGill administrators continues to be actively engaged in supporting our community members’ well-being through proactive planning and precautionary preparation.

Unless the University receives new directives from public health officials, McGill’s campuses will continue to follow normal activity schedules. There have, however, been some changes regarding travel. Following the Government of Canada’s recommendations that Canadians avoid all non-essential travel to China and all travel to Hubei province, the Provost has strongly advised McGill academic staff members to avoid traveling to China and, if already there, to leave the country as soon as possible. McGill’s Vision Link / Direct Travel provider will not process bookings to China, or bookings with layovers there, until further notice.

We are recommending that students, faculty and staff who have recently returned from China should continue their usual campus activities, except in the following tow cases:

  • They have returned from Hubei province, China in the last 14 days: Public Health Agency of Canada now recommends that these individuals self-isolate at home for 14 days after their return. In such cases, the University will accommodate the individual’s situation on a case-by-case basis, and I encourage you to signal such cases to me.
  • They have flu symptoms (fever, cough, difficulty breathing) and they were in Hubei province China, within the last 14 days, or in close contact with a symptomatic person who had been to Hubei within the last 14 days.

If you are supervising a staff member or a student falling in one of these categories, please contact for advice on ways to accommodate their circumstances.

We recommend that anyone who present symptoms inform their health care provider about their symptoms and travel history.  We have been receiving questions from many individuals who want to self-quarantine preventively; this is not recommended unless the individual recently returned from Hubei province or it was prescribed by a health professional.

Anyone worried about their health, or concerned about presenting a risk to others, can always contact Info Santé 1 877 644-4545.

Specialists advise that there is little evidence to suggest that wearing a mask prevents infection. Rather, they stress the importance of basic precautions such as regular handwashing.

Those precautionary measures are available on McGill’s coronavirus information page ( The page is being regularly updated with new information and FAQs. If you have a question that isn’t answered on the page, please write to



Fabrice Labeau

Deputy Provost (Student Life and Learning)

McGill University


February 7 2020