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UVa identifies cluster of coronavirus cases
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UVa identifies cluster of coronavirus cases

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UVa Rotunda

University officials on Tuesday raised the number of students who may gather in one place from five to 10.

The University of Virginia has identified a cluster of coronavirus cases in a residence hall and is mass testing students, according to a Wednesday tweet by the university.

UVa announced Wednesday evening that five cases were identified in the Balz-Dobie residence hall through wastewater and individual testing programs.

All 188 students in the building were notified of the cases Wednesday afternoon, according to the release. All of the students were to be tested Wednesday evening.

Building residents were told to remain in their rooms except use the bathroom or retrieve meals until they receive test results.

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Those with positive tests, and anyone in close contact with those people, will be moved to quarantine rooms, the school said.

On Wednesday, UVa reported 378 total cases, including 330 among students. Limited in-person classes began last week.

University officials have said that they have been conducting testing of asymptomatic students, saliva screenings and wastewater analysis.

“University leaders and public health experts have spent months planning for a return of students and a potential increase in cases,” UVa spokesman Brian Coy said in a statement. “We continue to expand our testing capacity, add quarantine and isolation rooms as necessary, and monitor our overall capacity to respond to cases and limit the spread of the virus.”

Last month, officials at the University of Arizona found students who tested positive for COVID-19 but were asymptomatic after testing wastewater from residence halls, the Arizona Republic reported. At least two students were isolated after the findings, and the university credited the testing with stemming a larger outbreak.

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