Office of the President

A message from the president:

  • UTMB taking precautions in case new coronavirus reaches our region

    January 30, 2020, 08:22 AM by Jessica Wyble

    It's always best to be prepared. In that spirit, UTMB is working to make sure we do our part in combating the potential spread of the novel coronavirus 2019-nCoV that originated in China and has been making headlines for the past few weeks.

    While there are no known cases of this particular coronavirus in Texas as of Jan. 28, 2020, UTMB is taking some actions out of an abundance of caution to protect our patients, students, faculty and staff.

    We will begin screening patients for recent travel to China and symptoms associated with this virus, such as fever, cough or sore throat. If you provide direct patient care, please check with your supervisor for details about screening, treatment and documentation.

    Business Operations and Facilities and the Health System are working to identify areas at all UTMB locations and campuses that could be used to temporarily isolate a patient who has been identified as someone who may have contracted the virus.

    We are also making sure that we have an ample supply of personal protection equipment for our staff who may be screening and treating patients. And, we will continue to monitor the situation to determine whether additional measures might be needed in the future. At this time, our standard infection control protocols should be practiced without fail.

    In addition to these precautions in our clinical enterprise, Human Resources/Employee Health will work with managers to determine if any faculty or staff have recently traveled to China (or other endemic areas that might be defined by the CDC). This is for general screening purposes only. Any related instructions for individual employees would be handled on a case-by-case basis. Students who have recently traveled to the endemic area should contact Student Health.

    It is important for us all to remember that we are in the middle of cold and flu season, so respiratory infections caused by a variety of viruses are common right now. Infection with 2019-nCoV specifically can be determined only through a particular laboratory test, as of today available only at the CDC in Atlanta. Please rely on information about the novel coronavirus only from reputable sources, such as the CDC, the World Health Organization, and county and state health departments. To see the latest from the Texas Department of State Health Services, visit

    Your safety and that of our patients are foremost. As always, we urge every member of the UTMB community—whether in direct patient care or other roles—to practice good hand hygiene, effectively cover coughs and sneezes, stay home from school or work if you are ill, and consult your health care provider if you are concerned about symptoms such as fever, cough, sore throat or difficulty breathing.

    UTMB is uniquely prepared to deal with any possible cases of the novel coronavirus that might present to us in the future. And our researchers are collaborating nationally and internationally to address this emerging disease. Thank you for doing your part to keep our university and our communities safe and healthy.

    Thank you,

    Dr. Ben G. Raimer
    President ad interim


  • Be safe during this week's Lone Star Rally in Galveston

    October 30, 2019, 08:15 AM by Jessica Wyble

    The annual Lone Star Rally is scheduled from Oct. 31 through Nov. 3. This event brings an additional 200,000 to 300,000 visitors—and motorcycles—to the Galveston region every year, and we expect this year will be just as busy, if not busier. 

    As always, UTMB will be here for visitors and residents who need medical care throughout the event. But as we work to help keep our community and our visitors safe and healthy, I want to make sure our faculty, staff and students remain safe as well. Please remember the following as this year’s Lone Star Rally gets into gear:

    ·         If you are traveling to one of our Galveston County locations during the rally, your commute may take longer than usual. Traffic will likely be heavy on roads leading to and around Galveston Island, and you’ll be sharing the road with large trailers and hard-to-see motorcycles. Leave yourself ample time and exercise extra caution when driving.

    ·         Many areas of Galveston Island will see very large crowds. As in any large crowd, be aware of your surroundings, your companions and your belongings at all times. If you see something that makes you feel unsafe or you see someone in need of assistance, call 9-1-1.

    ·         This is generally a weekend of heavy usage of our emergency departments and urgent care clinics, and supervisors must be able to plan appropriate staffing. As always, if for any reason you are unable to report to work as scheduled, let your supervisor know as soon as possible.

    Thank you for taking such great care of the community during these high-profile events. Wishing you all a safe and enjoyable weekend, wherever you are!

    Dr. Ben G. Raimer
    President ad interim


Contact Information

Office of the President
(409) 772-1902 
(409) 772-5064 fax

Suite 6.100 Administration Bldg.
301 University Blvd.
Galveston, Texas 77555-0129

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