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Over 107 positive and self-reported COVID-19 cases at JMU, over 800 cases administered

James Madison University fall classes began on Aug. 26.
James Madison University fall classes began on Aug. 26.(WHSV)
Published: Aug. 28, 2020 at 5:23 PM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - Just days after James Madison University students returned to Harrisonburg for the fall semester, more than 100 students tested positive for COVID-19.

JMU’s new COVID-19 Dashboard reports that 275 tests have been administered at the University Health Center from Aug. 24 to Aug. 26. with 11 positive COVID-19 results.

UHC is following CDC and Virginia Department of Health guidelines by prioritizing testing to only symptomatic individuals.

“In some circumstances those who have had close contact with a known positive case [will be tested],” university spokesperson Caitlyn Read said. “The health center is not testing asymptomatic individuals largely. They are adhering to the guidance to focus on those who most need the test.”

When it comes to testing those who play sports, the university is following NCAA guidelines by administering tests to asymptomatic student-athletes.

“We began testing our student-athletes when they returned to campus in early July and we have since administered 735 tests as part of the NCAA guidance to test our student-athletes,” Read said.

While the UHC has only 15 positive cases since July 1, most of the university’s positive tests have come from self-reported cases.

107 students have self-reported being positive for COVID-19. JMU received 13 self-reported cases on Aug. 24, 20 on Aug. 25, and 64 on Aug. 26.

Read stressed the importance of students letting the university know they have tested positive.

“The only way we’re going to be able to truly understand the prevalence of this disease in our student community is if people who test positive outside of our medical facility let us know that they’ve done so, and the same goes for our employees,” Read said.

JMU faculty can also get tested at the UHC. So far, two faculty and staff have tested positive.

Read said 14 students are in isolation or quarantine on campus.

The James Madison University COVID-19 Dashboard is updated weekdays at 10 a.m. based on data from the prior day. For more information on the COVID-19 dashboard, click here.

Copyright 2020 WHSV. All rights reserved.

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