Dennis Brown | February 1, 2021
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published a report today describing the University of Notre Dame’s swift and successful response to a surge in COVID-19 cases on campus soon after the fall 2020 semester began, concluding that outbreaks can be addressed by using a combination of testing, contact tracing, robust data systems, effective education efforts and other strategies.
Developed in collaboration with the CDC, the report was written by St. Joseph County Deputy Health Officer Dr. Mark Fox and three leaders of Notre Dame’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. They detail the University’s preparation for the return of students in August for in-person learning, the dramatic increase in cases during the first 10 days of classes, the decision to keep students on campus but to restrict interaction and teach only online for two weeks, and the robust mitigation measures taken that allowed a resumption of in-person learning after the pause.
The authors wrote: “Immediate, aggressive efforts to decrease disease transmission through enhanced testing, timely contact tracing, ensuring adequate isolation and quarantine space, expansion of asymptomatic screening, and communication promoting adherence to mitigation strategies can help control COVID-19 outbreaks while continuing in-person instruction. This approach is consistent with recommendations for universities with outbreaks to not send students home, to avoid seeding infections into the local or other communities.”
Read more here.