On Wednesday, March 11 the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. State Department increased the health advisory travel warning to Level 3 for most of Europe, advising people to avoid all nonessential travel to that area. In addition, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is suspending entry of most foreign nationals from Europe to the United States beginning at midnight on Friday, March 13 for 30 days. This does not apply to U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents, or their immediate family members. Screening measures and redirection to specific airlines are likely to follow.
With this change in travel guidelines, the MBL is extending its precautionary guidance related to travel, which now applies to most of Europe:
- Any traveler who has returned from a country – now including most of Europe, along with China, South Korea and Iran – with a CDC Level 3 travel health notice should not attend school or work for 14 days after their return date, following CDC guidelines. This self-isolation period also applies to visitors to the MBL. Individuals should work directly with their departments to facilitate academic, research, or work continuity. Please note, if you have returned from Europe within the last 14 days, this applies to you retroactively.
While Level 3 is the CDC’s highest alert, please bear in mind that the situation is continuing to change in many countries and cities within the U.S. that have had COVID-19 cases. As announced earlier this week, the MBL has suspended all nonessential international and domestic travel through April 15, and we urge similar caution in planning personal travel at this time.
Paul Speer PhD
Chief Operating Officer
Marine Biological Laboratory