The number of reported cases of COVID-19 on Auburn’s campus last week is the lowest since fall classes began.
From Sept. 13-19, 60 cases of COVID-19 among students, faculty and staff were reported to the University. Since fall classes began Aug. 16, the number of reported cases has fallen each week.
The positivity rate of COVID tests performed at the Auburn University Medical Clinic — which does not include all students or employees tested, and also includes tests taken by non-students and non-employees — has also continued to shrink since classes began.
From Aug. 16-20, the Med Clinic reports that 21.5% of the 620 tests performed there returned a positive result. During the most recent week, Sept. 13-19, just 3% of the 682 tests performed returned a positive result.
As fewer students report testing positive, quarantine and isolation housing have cleared out. On average, there was one person in isolation housing per day from Sept. 13-19. No one was in quarantine housing, and on average, less than one person was quarantining in place last week.
Dr. Fred Kam, director of the Auburn University Medical Clinic, said he thinks that we've likely seen the worst of the Delta variant.
“I think that we are on the downside of the Delta variant surge,” Kam said. “I think we peaked at least a couple of weeks ago.”
We can expect the Delta variant to continue to hang around for a while, though, he said, so Kam encourages students and employees to get vaccinated and follow University mask guidelines, which require all individuals to wear a mask indoors, with few exceptions.
“Have some regard, have some respect for yourself and for those around you," Kam said. "Wear a mask, it’s just for a few hours a day."
The University’s vaccine incentive program has also seen growing enrollment. As of Wednesday morning, 7,016 students had enrolled in the program which offers prizes to randomly selected students who received two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.
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Evan Mealins, senior in philosophy and economics, is the editor-in-chief of The Auburn Plainsman.