News, Coronavirus Updates

Last Week’s New Cases of COVID-19 Set Record of 85 Undergrad Positives

Boston College has reported 46 additional undergraduate cases of COVID-19 since Sunday out of 3,586 new tests, bringing last week’s total of undergraduate positives to 85—setting a record for largest number of cases in a single week—and this week’s total to 36 positive cases.

There is also a record-high number of undergraduate students in isolation as of Tuesday, with 115 students isolating. Seventy-three of these students are in isolation housing and 48 are recovering at home. 

This week’s undergraduate positivity rate as of Tuesday is 1.18 percent, compared to .84 percent last week. 

Over the weekend, the University broke its own record when an update of its COVID-19 dashboard brought the total number of undergraduate positives last week to 75 on Sunday. Last week, BC also broke its previous record number of students in isolation, with 105 students isolating as of Friday. 

The University does not release the number of students in quarantine, University Communications told The Heights in November. 

Northeastern University and Providence College—both of which BC has compared itself to in its COVID-19 releases—as well as Tufts University release the number of students in quarantine. Boston University, the University of Notre Dame, and University of Massachusetts Amherst—all of which BC has also compared itself to in releases—do not release their quarantine numbers.

By the end of the second full week of the fall semester, BC had reported 108 undergraduate cases of COVID-19 out of 15,273 tests, a positivity rate of .71 percent. At the end of the second full week of the spring semester, 208 undergraduate students have tested positive out of 34,837 tests, a positivity rate of .60 percent, as of Monday.

Executive Vice President and Acting Vice President for Student Affairs Michael Lochhead attributed the recent rise in cases at BC to “students letting their guard down” in an email sent on Feb. 9. 

If the trend continues, BC may implement further restrictions, including further limiting the guest policy, requiring all students to quarantine in their rooms, and potentially ending the on-campus semester early, the email said.

Featured Image by Ikram Ali / Heights Editor

February 16, 2021