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University Park Reports 117 New Student Coronavirus Cases

Penn State reported 117 more University Park students have tested positive for the coronavirus, according to an update to the university’s COVID-19 Dashboard Friday.

Two employees also tested positive.

The university administered 2,163 student random surveillance tests between October 30 and November 5, resulting in nine positives, 1,854 negatives, and 300 pending tests. Meanwhile, Penn State performed 1,717 on-demand tests in that span, which yielded 136 positives, 1,300 negatives, and 281 pending tests.

It’s worth noting that with just 3,880 student tests performed this week, Penn State administered its fewest number of total tests since the week of August 14-20.

Coupled with Tuesday’s dashboard update, Penn State has reported 203 new student cases at University Park this week.

According to the dashboard’s update, 43 students are currently in on-campus quarantine, while 47 are in on-campus isolation.

Since testing began on August 7, Penn State has found 4,072 positive student coronavirus cases at University Park out of 60,060 administered tests. Additionally, 15 employees have tested positive so far.

According to the dashboard, 232 student cases remain active at University Park, while 3,840 are inactive. Two employee cases are active, while 13 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.

“With two weeks of on-campus learning remaining for the fall semester, we are calling on all of our students to be forward-thinking with their actions so that they don’t unknowingly carry the virus home to their families and local communities,” Penn State President Eric Barron said. “That starts with signing up today for COVID-19 testing before departing campus for Thanksgiving break. It also means being even more vigilant in following all public health requirements for masking and social distancing, and taking extra care to limit interactions that carry a greater risk for virus exposure.”

Seventeen patients aged between 47 and 89 years old are currently hospitalized at Mount Nittany Medical Center. Fourteen have been admitted so far in November, following 58 admissions in October.

“Increased cases and hospitalizations – especially among vulnerable elderly populations – remains cause for concern,” Mount Nittany Chief Medical Officer Nirmal Joshi said. “It is also a reminder to be even more vigilant and thoughtful in consistently practicing preventive measures, including masking, social distancing and frequent hand washing.”

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 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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