WESTFIELD- Westfield State University reported six new COVID-19 cases this week to bring the semester total to 32 confirmed cases.
Of the six cases, five are students and one is a Westfield State employee. Twenty-nine students and three employees have been infected so far in the Spring 2021 semester.
Westfield State has remained in a state of moderate alert essentially since the beginning of the semester in January. This means there is low to moderate spread of COVID-19 on campus, which requires “Slight campus moderation, attention to personal behavior, and cooperation with required contact tracing.”
Residential students who test positive for COVID-19 or are considered a close contact with somebody else who has, will be sent to Lansdowne Place on Thomas Street to isolate or quarantine until they are no longer considered infectious. As of last Monday, March 1, just one student was quarantined and one student was isolated in Lansdowne Place according to university Chief of Staff Tricia Oliver.
The low number of quarantined students is a positive sign for the semester so far. One of the factors that led to in-person learning being shut down in the Fall 2020 semester was that the university ran out of room to quarantine students as the Fall COVID-19 outbreak swept through the campus.
“We are pleased that Westfield State University’s COVID-19 mitigation efforts—including our weekly testing program and the de-densification of our residence halls—have been effective in keeping low the number of positive cases on campus,” said Oliver in a statement last week, “While the Commonwealth works its way toward mass vaccination, we continue to remind our student, faculty, and staff populations that it is critically important to remain vigilant in their practice of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and Westfield State health and safety guidelines and protocols.”