Coronavirus updates and advice - 20 March

Coronavirus updates and advice - 20 March

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This is an understandably very concerning time for all and we want to assure our students that De Montfort Students’ Union (DSU) is working closely with De Montfort University (DMU) to monitor the ongoing situation regarding the coronavirus (Covid-19). The health and wellbeing of all our students and staff is our number one priority and we are taking the situation very seriously. 

DSU and DMU are continuing to monitor the situation and are advising students to check the following official advice from Public Healthy England (PHE) here which is frequently updated.

At the latest the government’s advice is to stay home...

  • Only go outside for food, health reasons or work (where this absolutely cannot be done from home)
  • Stay 2 metres (6ft) away from other people
  • Wash your hands as soon as you get home

Definitely, do not leave your home if either yourself or someone you live with has...

  • A high temperature (37.8 degrees centigrade and above)
  • A new, continuous cough

If you live with other people, they should stay at home for 14 days from the day the first person got symptoms.

You don’t need to contact NHS 111 to tell them you're staying at home. People who are self-isolating with mild symptoms won’t be tested for Covid-19. 

You can use the NHS COVID-19 screening webpage for more guidance, which is suitable for people of any age.  

If your symptoms worsen during home isolation or are no better after seven days contact NHS 111 online at If you have no internet access, you should call NHS 111. For medical emergencies only, dial 999. 

As per the current advice, the most important thing individuals can do to protect themselves remains washing their hands more often, for at least 20 seconds, with soap and water. Make sure you cough or sneeze into a tissue, put it in a bin and wash your hands. 

For further NHS guidance regarding the coronavirus please visit this page here.

For further information about the government response, please visit this page here.

Frequently asked questions:

What are the symptoms of the coronavirus?

Common symptoms of the coronavirus include a fever, dry cough, fatigue and sore throat. As the infection progresses, patients may also experience tightness of the chest and shortness of breath. The elderly and those with pre-existing medical conditions may be at heightened risk.

More advice for the public regarding symptoms is available here.

What precautions should I take?

Please follow the NHS’s advice about maintaining good hand, respiratory and personal hygiene. This advice includes: 

  • wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds 
  • always wash your hands when you get home or into work 
  • use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available 
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze 
  • put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards 
  • try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell 
  • don't touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean 
  • clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces in the home and work environment. 

Are lectures taking place?

From Wednesday 18 March, all classroom teaching – which includes face-to-face lectures, seminars and tutorials – will be suspended as DMU transition to online provision. This means that any scheduled classes and lectures that you have will not be offered between Wednesday 18 - Friday 20 March.

Then on Monday 23 March, DMU will begin delivering classroom teaching and lectures online. The online delivery will include any material missed as a result of the suspension of teaching activities this week. For further information about this, please visit the DMU FAQ page here.

Is the university open?

DMU have taken the decision to suspend face-to-face teaching from 18 March and to move all teaching online from 23 March. Staff are still available online to support students but face-to-face contact within the university has been limited until further notice. Student support teams - including our DSU Advice Team - can continue to be contacted through email.

Is DSU open?

To ensure the health and safety of all students and staff, DSU has made the decision to close all physical services including SU's Lounge, SUpplies, the DSU Reception and the Membership Office from Tuesday 17 at 5pm. However, we are still open and running online. This means you won't be able to come into the students' union to speak face to face but DSU will still continue to be here to support you online during such an uncertain period. We will continue to keep the positive students' union spirit and provide advise and communication via our website, by phone, email and on our social media channels. Please see below for our contact details...

Will attendance be affected?

DMU have suspendended attendance monitoring for all students (home/EU and overseas) from today, Monday 16 March. What this means is that if you have any concerns about your health or those of your family, you can return home and put those priorities first without worrying about the impact on your attendance record.

What if travel restrictions mean my visa will expire? 

On 17 February the government published new guidance on immigration provisions made by the Home Office for individuals in the UK who are unable to return to China. Due to travel restrictions because of coronavirus, some individuals may be facing uncertainty in relation to the expiry date of their current visa or leave to remain in the United Kingdom. The Home Office understands that in many cases this is because of circumstances outside of your control. 

Subject to the?full guidance, most people in the UK whose immigration status is affected by the coronavirus outbreak will get an automatic extension of their visa until Tuesday 31 March 2020. 

More detail on visa-related issues is included on the?GOV.UK?website, including: 

The 'Coronavirus Immigration Helpline' is now available on 0800 678 1767 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, calls are free of charge) or email

Can I travel?

This is constantly changing. For guidance on travelling and living overseas, please follow the government’s travel advice here

Will DSU events be taking place?

All DSU club nights - including InJunction - and DSU Celebrates have now been cancelled until further notice. This decision has not been taken lightly but our priority is the health and wellbeing of our students, event staff and the wider community. Anyone with a ticket will recieve a full refund. If you have any questions about refunds, please contact 

Will student-led meetings and events be taking place?

All scheduled society and student-led events that were due to take place at DSU are now cancelled. We also advise that student-led group meetings and events scheduled to take place on and off campus are either postponed or cancelled. We apologise for any inconvenience caused by this and assure you that this decision has not been taken lightly but the health and wellbeing of our members is our utmost priority. If you have any questions about this, please email

We are continuing to work closely with the University regarding our response to Covid-19 and will be providing as much guidance as possible through our social media channels and website.

If you have any further questions, please contact or


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