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VCU has three dozen COVID-19 cases during opening week

Posted at 3:09 PM, Aug 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-20 18:33:04-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Three days after classes resumed at Virginia Commonwealth University in downtown Richmond, VCU has confirmed three dozen positive COVID-19 cases on campus.

Of those infected, 25 were VCU students and 11 were staff, according to metrics posted on the university's COVID-19 dashboard.

"Of the entry testing we've conducted for residential students before they arrived on campus, 4,380 tested negative and 15 tested positive," VCU spokesperson Mike Porter wrote in an email. "We would not identify details that could compromise the privacy of a student or employee but each time there is a case of COVID-19 confirmed by the Virginia Department of Health, student health or employee health will get in touch directly with those who have come into close contact with the person to begin two weeks of self-quarantine and health monitoring."

Eleven VCU students were listed as in on-campus isolation and 32 students in on-campus quarantine.

"Isolation separates those who test positive from people who are not sick," the website explained. "Quarantine separates and restricts the movement of those who may have been exposed to see if they become sick."

Approximately half of VCU’s classes, which started Monday, will be held in-person. Nearly 35 percent are online, with the remaining scheduled as a hybrid form.

VCU employees and students are required to log their symptoms each day through a program called OneVCU - Responsible Together.

At the beginning of the month, members of the VCU chapter of the American Association of University Professors approved a resolution that said “the health and safety of students, faculty, and staff should be the primary consideration in decision-making about when to reopen a campus.”

They asked VCU administration to reconsider the in-person start to instruction.

CBS 6 has also reached out to the other major universities in the Metro Richmond-area for information about COVID-19 on their campuses.

The University of Richmond directed us to their dashboard which “provide updates on COVID-19 data specifically related to the campus community”. The dashboard shows that as of August 18 there are six active cases. There have been a total of 11 cases since July 12.

CBS 6 is still waiting to hear back from Virginia Union University and Virginia State University.