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University Park Adds 195 Coronavirus Cases, Cumulative Cases Pass 3,000

Penn State reported 195 more University Park students have tested positive for the coronavirus, according to an update to the university’s COVID-19 Dashboard Friday.

One employee also tested positive through Friday’s update.

The university administered 2,791 student random surveillance tests between October 2 and 8, resulting in nine positives, 2,496 negatives, and 286 pending tests. Meanwhile, Penn State performed 2,223 on-demand tests in that span, which yielded 278 positives, 1,495 negatives, and 450 pending tests.

Coupled with Tuesday’s dashboard update, Penn State has reported 481 new cases at University Park this week.

According to the dashboard’s update, 60 students are currently in on-campus quarantine, while 136 are in on-campus isolation.

Since testing began on August 7, Penn State has found 3,159 positive student coronavirus cases at University Park out of 40,584 administered tests. Additionally, seven employees have tested positive so far.

According to the dashboard, 541 student cases remain active at University Park, while 2,618 are inactive. Five employee cases are active, while two are not.

It’s worth noting Penn State defines “inactive” as any case that’s more than 10 days old. At this time, it’s unclear how many inactive cases, if any, have actually tested negative and are truly dormant.

Penn State President Eric Barron released a statement Friday touting the university’s declining case numbers. However, he implored students to continue following guidelines and complying with testing as the semester continues.

“As we noted on Tuesday we are continuing to see declines in our positive test results, however, it would be premature to draw conclusions about wider trends. It remains our goal to reduce the virus’ spread through a comprehensive, community-wide effort,” Barron said. “Testing results are just one of the many pieces of data we’re monitoring to determine our next steps in responding to this pandemic. Our approach is evolving in alignment with what we’re seeing in test results, contact tracing, and quarantine, isolation and hospital capacity, among other statistics and trends. We will continue to adapt our testing strategy, including exploring new options for expanded rapid testing, as we monitor and respond to the virus’ spread on our campuses and in our communities.”

Currently, Mount Nittany Medical Center is providing care to 13 coronavirus-positive inpatients aged 33 to 96. The hospital implemented planned adjustments to its normal operations Friday following an increase in patient admissions.

Penn State plans to update the dashboard with new testing statistics twice a week on Tuesdays and Fridays. The tool incorporates data random surveillance testing, symptomatic testing, and self-reported testing through University Health Services or Occupational Medicine.

Penn State’s data and Pennsylvania’s Department of Health data may vary due to lag between test collection and test results from various labs.

Throughout the semester, the university plans to randomly test at least 1% of its population each day at designated locations around campus, including the Bryce Jordan Center and Eisenhower Auditorium. Students can also receive free walk-up testing at Pegula Ice Arena from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.

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About the Author

Matt DiSanto

Matt proudly served as Onward State’s managing editor for two years until graduating from Penn State with distinction in May 2022. Now, he’s off in the real world doing real things. Send him an email ([email protected]) or follow him on Twitter (@mattdisanto_) to stay in touch.

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