U of A opens second isolation dorm as COVID-19 cases grow

University reports 91 students housed in an isolation dorm

quarantine dorms on campus

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The University of Arizona is continuing to test students for COVID-19. During a campus reentry update meeting Wednesday, campus leaders said 8.8 percent of students tested in the past 24 hours had positive results.

“We’re at a critical juncture, a pivot point here with these early numbers now," said Dr. Richard Carmona, who is leading the Campus Reentry Task Force. "If these bumps occur as we anticipate they may, we will have to shut things down.”

Students with the virus, who live in residence halls, are taken to an isolation dorm where they stay for 10 days. Space in isolation dorms is very limited for students living off-campus. Currently 91 students are in an isolation dorm, 90 lived in dorms and one lived off-campus.

“We have over 400 beds set aside for isolation for those students who are testing positive," said Dana Robbins-Murray, the director of Administrative Services for U of A Housing.

She said the university has four dorms for isolation in total. The university has looked into placing students in local hotels if the dorms fill up. Roommates who both test positive have the option to room together in the isolation dorm. If a roommate tests negative, they’re asked to quarantine on their own.

“In their dorm room for 14 days so that they don’t spread it in case they have it and have the opportunity to be tested additionally," Robbins-Murray said.

Students choose three meals each day from campus dining that are delivered to their door. After the student is cleared from their isolation room, it undergoes a high level of disinfecting.

U of A leaders said they haven’t seen any obvious transmission of the virus from the university to the surrounding community so far.

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