Campus events cancelled, travel restrictions

© nopparit, iStock

© nopparit, iStock

EPFL's Security, Prevention and Health team (DSPS) is in regular contact with the cantonal doctor and the federal authorities and is keeping close tabs on the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

We have prepared this update following the rise in the number of cases in Switzerland and the decisions of Switzerland’s Federal Council. Please take careful note of this update, which includes the latest developments and the precautionary measures required by the health authorities.

Large events have been banned

Invoking the Federal Epidemic Act, the Federal Council today classified the current situation in Switzerland as a particular situation. As a result, events with more than 1,000 people have been banned. This measure takes effect immediately and will remain in place until at least 15 March 2020, in order to contain the spread of coronavirus in Switzerland.

Following this decision, EPFL is required to:

  • postpone FORWARD, the innovation forum for SMEs (organized together with Ringier), which will now take place on 8 June 2020
  • cancel Artiphys, the physics section's upcoming evening event.

Decisions on events scheduled to take place after 15 March will be made in due course. If you have any questions about whether a given event will be held, please call 021 693 51 27 or send an email to [email protected].

Preventive measures and quarantine – 28 February 2020 update


The Federal Office of Public Health considers an area to be affected if the coronavirus continues to be transmitted from person to person or can be assumed to be spreading in this way.

According to the health authorities, the following areas are affected:

  • China
  • Iran
  • South Korea
  • Singapore
  • Northern Italy (Lombardy, Piedmont and Veneto).


EPFL is applying the following preventive measures for the affected areas listed above:

  • EPFL students and staff may not travel to any of these areas for professional or educational purposes until further notice.

If you are returning, or have recently returned, from an affected area:

  • Do not go to the EPFL campus for work or school. This applies to the entire EPFL community and anyone who has been invited to campus.
  • You must work/study from home for 14 days from the date on which you returned (Software and services designed for working remotely).
  • Staff members and PhD students must inform their supervisor via email; Bachelor’s and Master’s students must inform their section via email.

If you show any symptoms:

Are you having trouble breathing? Do you have a cough or fever?

  • Stay home.
  • Avoid crowds.
  • Call your doctor or a health center and follow their instructions.
  • Tell them that you traveled recently to one of the affected areas and that you’re showing symptoms.
  • Also let them know if you live in student housing or are renting a room in a private house.

If you don’t have a primary care doctor nearby, you can call Vaud Canton’s medical hotline at 0848 133 133.


We urgently advise you not to invite people from any of the affected areas to EPFL for professional, educational or personal reasons. It’s better to postpone face-to-face meetings rather than risk spreading the disease. You can always hold video conferences using Zoom.

We also reiterate the following hygiene precautions, which are the same as those recommended to avoid getting the flu:

  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water or use a hand sanitizer. Automatic sanitizer dispensers have been installed in various parts of the campus.
  • If you need to cough or sneeze, do so into the crook of your elbow, or use tissues.
  • If you have a cough or fever, stay home.

For the latest news, go to

We also encourage you to download the EPFL Campus app immediately. That’s one of the places where urgent messages will appear.

We will keep you up to date on the situation and let you know if any new measures are put in place on campus.

Source: Architecture