Miami University confirms five off-campus students test positive for COVID-19; health dept. investigating

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OXFORD, Ohio (WCMH) — The Butler County General Health District (BCGHD) is investigating several case of the COVID-19 virus tied to Miami University students with links to off-campus gatherings earlier this month.

According to BCGHD, the cases are tied to gatherings held from May 8 -16.

Miami University said five students living off-campus tested positive for COVID-19.

The health department is contacting anyone it believes was in close contact with an infected person.

“We want everyone potentially exposed to be aware so they can self-monitor and get tested quickly to reduce potential further spread. Should you receive a call from the Health District, we encourage your complete cooperation,” said Jennifer Bailer, health commissioner for BCGHD, in a release.

Miami University released the following statement Friday evening to students, parents and local
organizations:

I hope you have had a good week and are enjoying a healthy and safe summer break.  The health and safety of our students, faculty, staff and community are always our top priority.  I write to inform you that recently five students, living off-campus, tested positive for COVID-19.

The Butler County General Health District is currently investigating and contacting anyone believed to have been in close contact with an infected individual. Those who attended an off-campus student gathering on or after May 8 should monitor themselves for fever or other COVID-19 symptoms for 14 days from their last day in Oxford.  

We encourage you to continue safeguarding yourself against COVID-19 by wearing a mask, practicing social distancing, using good hand hygiene, staying home if you are sick and not leaving your home unless necessary. Leading health officials continue to learn more about COVID-19 every day. It is important to follow all guidance and orders issued by the Ohio Department of Health, CDC and your local health department. Anyone who develops COVID-19 symptoms should call their health care provider or contact their local hospital.

Kimberly A Moore, Ed. D., Associated Vice President and Dean of Students, Miami University

As of Saturday, Butler County reported 750 total COVID-19 cases with 25 deaths and 141 hospitalizations. There are 99 cases of the disease among people between the ages of 20-29 and 53 cases among those aged 0-19 in Butler County. No one in those age ranges has died from the disease.

The health department is urging anyone who attended any of these gatherings to self-monitor for fever or other COVID-19 symptoms for 14 days from their last day in Oxford.

Anyone who is showing symptoms is asked to contact their health care provider or local emergency room for instructions.

Symptoms for the virus include:

  • Fever over 100.4
  • Cough
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Chills
  • Headache
  • Muscle pain
  • Sore throat
  • Loss of taste or smell

Before the virus took hold in the United States, two students were tested for coronavirus exposure. Both students tested negative in early February.

Coronavirus in Ohio resources:

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