Active COVID-19 cases continue to decrease within the ASU community

Total active cases have decreased by 151 since Sept. 10 and cumulative cases reached 1,498, according to an update Monday

There are 486 total active positive COVID-19 cases within the ASU community as of Sept. 13, according to an update posted online by the University Monday night. Active student cases have decreased to 478 and active employee cases have decreased to eight. 

There are 387 cases off campus in the metropolitan Phoenix area and 77 in isolation at the Tempe campus. The other 14 student cases are in isolation on the Downtown Phoenix, West and Polytechnic campuses. 

Since Aug. 1, there have been 1,469 known students who have tested positive for the coronavirus and 29 employees, a total of 1,498 ASU community members. The cumulative student positive case number increased by 84 since an update Thursday.

ASU has collected results from 54,244  tests since Aug. 1. The school community's percent positivity rate stands at roughly 2.7% when using the number of cumulative cases as the numerator and the number of total tests as the denominator.

The percent positivity rate calculated cannot be completely accurate because it is unclear whether the number of completed tests represent the people who have taken tests or the number of completed tests. In addition, if someone takes a test outside of an ASU facility, it is only recommended they report it to the University. 

The University reported Monday 1,139 students and 144 employees had been rolled off the positive case list after meeting the guidelines to return to campus. Before returning, students and employees must spend 10 days in isolation if they never experienced symptoms or after receiving positive test results. 

Those who do experience symptoms must spend at least 10 days in isolation along with 24 hours with no fever or use of fever-reducing medication, according to the University's coronavirus FAQ page

Guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention do not require those who test positive for the virus to test negative before rejoining the community. 

Tracking of Arizona Department of Health Services zip code data done internally by The State Press shows cases in the 85281 zip code, where the Tempe campus is located, have increased by 254 since Thursday's update. 

The Tempe campus zip code along with zip codes 85212, 85004, 85306 and 85282, representing the locations of the three other campuses and an additional Tempe zip code, saw a collective increase of 322 cases since Thursday. 

Arizona's positive case count has decreased significantly since spikes in the summer months but has not diminished completely. The state's Rt, the number of people who would become infected by someone infectious, is at 1.05 as of Monday. 

Values under one signify a community could expect to see fewer cases. On Aug. 1, the Rt was at 0.85. On the first day of classes, Aug. 20, the Rt was at 1.01.

ADHS reported an increase of 213 positive COVID-19 cases Monday, bringing the state total to 208,725 positive cases and 5,322 deaths across all 15 counties.

No operational changes were announced with Monday's update. So, as per University policy, no email was sent to students. The University is still operating with housing mode three and learning mode two. 

The third housing mode includes increased security, a no external visitor policy and a de-densification process for residence halls with communal bathrooms and living spaces. The second learning mode allows students to attend classes using ASU Sync that allows some student to be present for instruction in-person while other attend the class through Zoom. 

Senior Reporter Wyatt Myskow contributed to the writing of this article. 

Reach the reporter at and follow @piperjhansen on Twitter. 

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