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COVID Dashboard Update: Campus Sees Highest Positivity Rate Yet

Furman students are set to go home for winter break just as the positivity rate on campus reaches new heights.

Utilization of campus quarantine space remains low as many students chose to go home. Unsplash

The Nov. 16 COVID-19 Dashboard update revealed the highest positivity rate on campus since the Sept. 29 implementation of random asymptomatic testing.

From Nov. 9-15, the University administered 354 random and symptomatic COVID-19 tests. Of those, the Earle Student Health Center confirmed 8 positive cases. This reflects a positivity rate of 2.26%. That is an increase from the  1.76% positivity rate campus saw last week after the Administration mandated testing for all third- and fourth-year students.  

Despite the 2.26% positivity rate, there was a decrease in the utilization of on-campus isolation and quarantine spaces. The update indicated that 70 students are currently in quarantine, a decrease from the 79 students last week.  Only 14 of the 70 students are quarantined on campus, however, thus decreasing the on-campus quarantine space utilization from 13% last week to 3% this week. This may be a result of students choosing to go home early rather than quarantine on-campus until university housing closes on Nov. 21.

In addition to 354 student tests, 3 employee tests were also administered, resulting in 1 positive case. The tests were administered upon reported COVID-19 symptoms or exposure to an infected individual.

Beyond Furman, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SC DHEC) released updated disease metrics, showing an increase in the two-week cumulative incidence rate from 324 to 400 new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 individuals.

The two-week percent positive rate in Greenville County has also increased from 15.8% to 17.6%, which is classified as “high” by SC DHEC. The acute hospital bed occupancy in the Upstate has increased, moving from 79% to 82%.

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