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Georgia Southwestern State University is closely monitoring the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. We are continuing to receive and share further guidance from the University System of Georgia (USG) and Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) as it relates to COVID-19.

For a full list of campus services and hours for Spring 2021, visit

GSW Updates

Please visit, launched on July 16, 2020, for the most up-to-date information about GSW's return to campus plan and procedures for Fall 2020.

*All coronavirus-related media inquiries should be directed to University Relations at or 229-942-6549.


Health & Information Resources

Faculty Resources

Student Resources


COVID-19 graphic

What is coronavirus (COVID-19)?
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. The virus that causes COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus that was first identified during an investigation into an outbreak in Wuhan, China. The virus has been named "SARS-CoV-2" and the disease it causes has been named "coronavirus disease 2019" (abbreviated "COVID-19").

How is COVID-19 spread?
According to the CDC, COVID-19 is spread like any other respiratory illness, such as the common cold or influenza. Coughing or sneezing by those who already have symptoms spread coronavirus to others. It also may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

What are the symptoms?
Patients with COVID-19 have had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of fever, cough, and shortness of breath.

What should I do if I feel sick?
Anyone showing signs or symptoms of coronavirus should first call their primary care provider. DO NOT go to the GSW Health Clinic, health department or emergency room. If you do not have a primary care provider, then please call your local health department. While you are waiting to see your doctor, be sure to take the following precautions to stop the spread of germs. Do not go out in public or go to work until you've been cleared by your doctor.

What precautions can I take?
People can help protect themselves from respiratory illness with everyday preventive actions.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
    • Stay home if you are sick, especially if you have a fever.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after coughing or sneezing.
  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with tissue or your sleeve when sneezing or coughing.
  • Stay home and avoid crowded places if possible. 

What should GSW students be doing?
We encourage GSW students to diligently check their GSW email accounts and this page for any updates. Important announcements will also be made on social media and, in emergency situations, our emergency notification system. Students should also be practicing good hygiene and the precautions listed above.

If news about COVID-19 is causing an increase in anxiety, hopelessness or isolation, we have structures in place to help you attend to your mental health. Students can connect with the Counseling Services, and employees can seek resources through Human Resources and the Employee Assistance Program.

Contact Information

  • GSW Health and Counseling Services - (229) 931-2235
  • GSW Public Safety - (229) 931-2245
  • Sumter County Health Department - (229) 924-3637
  • Georgia Department of Public Health West Central District information line - 1 (855) 962-0955

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