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Active COVID-19 cases at ASU more than double a week before semester starts

As positive cases continue to rise, the University is asking students to submit a COVID-19 test by Jan. 7 before the spring semester begins

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A volunteer collects test tubes from people who have completed the ASU Biodesign saliva test on Tuesday, July 28, 2020, outside State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

With the start of the spring semester days away, active COVID-19 cases within the ASU community more than doubled from last week as students return from winter break.

The University reported 501 active cases in its update Monday, the highest total it has seen since Jan. 28, 2021, when it reported 510 cases.

According to the update, student cases increased by 244 from last week to 407. Employee cases rose to 94, compared to 61 last week.

Of the cases among students, 401 are located off campus. Three of the positive student cases are isolating on the Tempe campus, and the other three are isolating on the Downtown Phoenix, West or Polytechnic campuses, according to the update.

Like last January, the U.S. is again seeing a rise in COVID-19 cases. On Monday, Johns Hopkins University reported a record high single-day new case count of 1,082,549 in the U.S., along with 1,688 new deaths.

The Dean of Students Office emailed students Monday asking them to submit a COVID-19 test result no later than Jan. 7 "to help stem the spread of the COVID-19 virus, including the new omicron variant." Students can submit results here.

Students who do not submit a test result before the deadline will be asked to test during the first week they return to campus, according to the test submission form.

Students in need of a test can use the University's Devils' drop-off located at multiple locations on each campus. However, the University's email to students does not provide information on how to get a test prior to the deadline if they are located away from campus and are not back to use the resource by Jan. 7.

The University has not announced any changes as to how classes will be conducted when students return for the spring semester, which starts on Jan. 10.

On- and off-campus students who participated in random testing from Dec. 27, 2021, to Jan. 2, 2022, reported a percent positive rate of about 18%.

Since the University began posting positive COVID-19 cases among employees and students in late August 2020, ASU has reported 9,936 positive cases. The ASU community has a percent positivity rate of about 2.54%, which represents the level of transmission of the virus.

The Arizona Department of Health Services reported 7,212 new COVID-19 cases in the state and 154 newly reported deaths on Tuesday.

The University continues to encourage students to get vaccinated and for those eligible to get a booster shot. Students can use the ASU Health Portal to schedule a vaccine.

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Wyatt MyskowProject Manager

Wyatt Myskow is the project manager at The State Press, where he oversees enterprise stories for the publication. He also works at The Arizona Republic, where he covers the cities of Peoria and Surprise.

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