What you should know about treating and preventing the spread of COVID-19.

Last updated April 9, 2020

The SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 is a new coronavirus disease that was first identified in December 2019. It is part of a larger family of viruses called coronavirus, some of which are in circulation normally and can cause illnesses like the common cold. COVID-19 is not the same strain of coronavirus as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) or Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).

If you believe you or someone you know may have been exposed to COVID-19, please complete this form.


University Updates 


Virtual Learning Period

Following spring break, classes that can will move to online instruction. Check with your professor for details on how specific courses will be held. Most courses can be taken pass/fail, some exceptions apply. Residence halls will be packed by professional movers in phases and stored until the Fall 2020 semester.



Virtual Learning Information




GW remains open and operational but only employees designated as on-site should travel to and from our campuses. Current telework requirements for all other employees remain in place until futher notice. 



Telework Information 


Who to Contact 


  • For information about specific courses, please contact your instructor.
  • For information about the packing and storage of possessions in your residence hall, please contact [email protected].
  • For suggestions on Commencement, please contact [email protected].



Faculty & Staff 

  • GW’s live-answer Information Line for COVID-19-related questions is available from Monday through Friday (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.) and can be reached at 1-855-GWU-INFO (855-498-4636).



Symptoms & Treatment

Symptoms of the COVID-19 can include:

  • fever
  • cough or sore throat
  • shortness of breath.

Public health officials say the symptoms may appear 2 to 14 days after exposure to the virus. Learn more at the CDC’s website

If you are not feeling well or have any COVID-19 related questions, please contact the Colonial Health Center office at 202-994-8951 during normal business hours. If you are sick, please do not walk into the health center unless directed by a CHC medical provider. Please note that operating hours may change as this situation evolves. For up-to-date hours, please visit the CHC website.

If you believe you have been exposed or someone you know has been exposed to someone who is a confirmed case of COVID-19 please fill out this form

Students, staff and faculty who are ill—no matter the cause—are encouraged to stay home and to communicate by phone or email to relevant parties (professors, supervisor, etc.) to let them know they are sick. 

Testing for COVID-19

You will be tested only if you meet the current U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria. Clinicians will use their judgement to determine if a patient has signs and symptoms compatible with COVID-19 and whether an individual should be tested. The criterial includes close contact with an individual who has a laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 case and recent travel to a country experiencing a COVID-19 outbreak.