Southern Cross University has closed its Gold Coast and Lismore campuses today (Wednesday, March 11) after a staff member was diagnosed with COVID-19.
It is the first reported case of Coronavirus in the Northern Rivers.
The internationally-based staff member attended a series of workshops at the university’s Gold Coast and Lismore campuses on March 2-6 before returning to The Philippines on March 7.
The staff member fell ill and was tested for COVID-19 which returned a positive result Tuesday, March 10, according to reports from The Philippines.
Southern Cross immediately alerted Health authorities and is closely working with them.
The University has identified 45 people who came into contact or proximity with the man during his time in Australia. In conjunction with the health authorities, the University is contacting each individual.
Anyone who is feeling unwell is being asked to self-isolate and seek medical attention.
The Filipino man reported feeling better by Monday.
Southern Cross University Vice President (Operations) Allan Morris said the campuses would close on Wednesday March 11 for cleaning and as a general precaution.
The decision means an estimated 8,000 students will have to study at home but are not required to self-isolate.
During this time, Southern Cross will seek further advice from health authorities.
‘Our priority at all times is the well-being of our staff, students and visitors so we apologise for this short disruption but it is the right thing to do,’ Mr Morris said.