In an email sent out on Tuesday, the University of Mississippi confirmed that 58 active cases of COVID-19 among students had been reported to the university. The cases span between students living both on and off-campus.
The full email can be found below:
University officials confirmed a total of 58 active cases reported to University Health on Monday, based on tests conducted over the past several days involving students who live both on- and off-campus. The students who tested positive have been directed to enter isolation immediately in order to prevent virus spread.
The total number of new cases includes three positive cases among residents of one floor or wing of a residence hall. Guidance from the Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) advised that three or more cases within the same environment, space, or program, such as a floor or a wing of a residence hall, constitutes an outbreak. Other residents of that floor have been notified to quarantine for 14 days. People in quarantine should stay home, separate themselves from others, monitor their health, and follow directions from the Mississippi State Department of Health. Students who are in quarantine should not attend in-person classes.
UM and MSDH are conducting contact tracing on the students who tested positive. The contact tracing team will notify those who may have been in close contact with the individuals who tested positive. Staff and students are encouraged to download Everbridge, the secure smartphone app that allows individuals to self-report their positive COVID-19 status and helps university contact tracers notify anyone who came in close contact to people who are positive and may have been exposed to the virus. The Everbridge app can be downloaded for free in Apple and Android app stores or by clicking here.
In addition to the exisiting confirmed cases page, university officials have launched a dashboard, housed on the university’s COVID-19 website, that tracks a number of metrics related to the presence of the virus at the university. Rather than sending email communications, future updates on the number of cases and other related data will be posted to the dashboard daily.
In an effort to slow the spread of the virus, we request your immediate attention to and adherence to the following health-authority-recommended practices – not only to ensure your own well-being, but the well-being of others:
- Stay home when ill or if other family members are ill.
- Maintain social distancing of at least six feet.
- Wear cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your face, eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- Watch for cough, troubled breathing, or other signs of respiratory infection.
- Monitor temperature for a fever above 100.4 degrees F (38 degrees C).