COVID-19 Travel Updates

1) Update May 2022: IEEE Finance Committee Memo to IEEE Volunteers on Travel

2) Letter from 2020 IEEE President and CEO Toshio Fukuda and IEEE Executive Direcor Stephen Welby


** This message is being sent on behalf of Gerardo Barbosa, IEEE MGA Treasurer**

Dear Fellow IEEE Volunteers,

Below is an update to the IEEE Travel Policy sent a few days ago by Director Mary Ellen Randall, 2022 IEEE Treasurer.

This message is sent to MGA Board members, Region Director-Elects, Region Treasurers, MGA and MGA/IEEE Committee Chairs, and Chairs and Treasurers of Sections, Sub-sections, and Geographic Councils.

If you have any questions, you can always reach out to the MGA Finance team at

Best regards,
Gerardo Barbosa
2022 IEEE MGA Treasurer

---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: Mary Ellen Randall <>
Date: Sat, May 21, 2022 at 10:27 AM
Subject: Travel Policy Update

Dear Colleagues,

Below please find an update to the Travel Policy reflecting the current health situation.  Please advise your organization's leadership and members, as appropriate..

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

Best regards,
Mary Ellen Randall

IEEE Treasurer
MOVE Community Outreach Program Director

(919) 388-1776

Policy Update (May 2022)

Health and safety policies regarding social distancing, gatherings and travel have evolved throughout the world since the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 to be a global pandemic in March 2020.  In certain locations, public health authorities have eased many, if not all, restrictions put in place during the pandemic and are allowing a return to  in-person meetings and less restrictive  travel. Other locations have maintained tight controls on travel and gatherings.  IEEE will continue to carefully monitor and follow the guidance of local public health authorities and promote safe travel and gatherings for our Volunteers.  In light of all of these factors, IEEE will be lifting its pandemic-related travel restrictions and reverting to its pre-pandemic posture with respect to the IEEE travel policy.  This updated policy is subject to the important considerations listed below:  

ll IEEE Volunteer travel and associated meetings must continue to adhere to all appropriate guidance from local public health authorities. Local policies around meetings and travel vary across the globe and continue to evolve.

Volunteers engaged in IEEE-related  travel and in-person activities acknowledge the continuing risk of exposure to COVID-19.

Under our current Volunteer Global Travel Accident Medical Plan:

       If a Volunteer is within the Volunteer’s country of permanent residence, the Volunteer must rely on their personal health and medical insurance if in need of emergency medical attention. 

       Volunteers will be covered for their emergency medical expenses while traveling on IEEE business outside of their home country.  Emergency medical evacuation and repatriation are also covered.  If medical evacuation (certified as necessary by the attending physician) or repatriation is needed, the travel assistance services provider will make all arrangements with the appropriate transportation services and arrange for accompanying medical staff (if necessary), including coordinating medical case monitoring with attending and/or home country/region physician.

IEEE Travel and Expense Reimbursement Guidelines are in accordance with the IEEE Finance Operations Manual (FOM). 

FOM.5 - Insurance Coverage (IEEE FINANCE OPERATIONS MANUAL (FOM) V49) requires that IEEE maintain a Volunteer Global Travel Accident Medical Plan, the details of which can be found at Volunteer Global Travel Accident Medical Plan.

The Volunteer Global Travel Medical Plan does not cover or reimburse costs associated with mandatory or self-quarantine or isolation associated with IEEE Volunteer travel to a country with these rules in place.  Further, FOM.6 - Business Expense Reporting does not allow for reimbursement of food and/or lodging costs related to mandatory or self-quarantine or isolation associated with IEEE Volunteer travel.  Therefore, if there is a risk of quarantine on entering or departing an area, IEEE Volunteers should instead plan to participate virtually when possible by using IEEE video and teleconferencing tools.

However, if a Volunteer incurs costs due to events beyond their control while in transit on IEEE business (e.g., you are prevented from leaving a location due to notice of a positive test result, etc.), then IEEE will reimburse the traveler for appropriate expenses.

IEEE recommends that If you have any questions, you contact your OU staff business solutions manager or OU Volunteer leadership.


Letter From 2020 IEEE President and CEO Toshio Fukuda and IEEE Executive Director Stephen Welby

As you are aware, last week the World Health Organization officially declared the novel coronavirus COVID-19 a pandemic. This global health crisis is a unique challenge that has impacted many members of the IEEE family. We would like to express our concern and support for all the members of the IEEE community, our staff, our families and all others affected by this outbreak.

Governments around the world are now issuing restrictions on travel, gatherings, and meetings in an effort to limit and slow the spread of the virus. The health and safety of the IEEE community is our first priority and IEEE is supporting these efforts.

We request that all members avoid conducting in-person IEEE activities in areas impacted by the coronavirus threat and instead maximize the use of our online and virtual alternatives. IEEE provides many tools to support our membership with virtual engagement, including our online collaboration space IEEE Collabratec.

Following the advice of local authorities, most upcoming IEEE conferences and meetings have already been postponed or replaced with virtual meetings.

IEEE publications continue to accept submissions and publish impactful cutting-edge research. Our online publications remain available to researchers and students around the world.

IEEE standards development also continues, using online collaboration to replace in-person working groups.

IEEE educational activities continue to offer online instruction and IEEE’s pre-university educational resources may be of assistance to families of students whose classroom activities have been disrupted.

All IEEE operations are continuing. At many of our global offices, IEEE staff will support IEEE’s mission while teleworking from their homes to minimize risk. As of this time, on the advice of local authorities, IEEE offices in China and India remain open.

We know that many of you are directly and indirectly engaged in the fight against this disease: supporting biomedical research and applications, supporting data analysis and modeling, maintaining critical communications and power infrastructure, and caring for each other. We are grateful for your work.

We extend our heartfelt thanks and appreciation to all of our IEEE members for your understanding. These are difficult times, but we will get through them by working together. Thank you for your support of our shared mission to advance technology for humanity.

Please stay safe and well.

Toshio Fukuda, 2020 IEEE President and CEO

Stephen Welby, IEEE Executive Director