The Daily Gamecock

COVID-19 on campus: USC reports 29 active cases

<p>USC reported 12 active COVID-19 cases on campus on Tuesday. This is a increase of one case since last week's total of 11 active cases. &nbsp;</p>
USC reported 12 active COVID-19 cases on campus on Tuesday. This is a increase of one case since last week's total of 11 active cases.  

The university reported 29 active cases this week as COVID-19 numbers continue to decrease and alert levels reach a "new normal."

4,738 cases have been reported to the university since Jan. 1, according to data USC released on Tuesday. Of the 29 active cases, 20 are students and nine are faculty and staff. 

This is a decrease of six cases since last week's total of 35 active cases. The university has seen a steady decline in cases since an initial increase in January. 

At a 0.9% positivity rate for students, about one in 110 students who got tested from Feb. 20 to Feb. 26 tested positive. 

This falls well below South Carolina's positivity rate of 5.6%. There are currently 227 new cases in South Carolina, according to data the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control reported on March 1. 

USC announced an update to the mask mandate through an email on Feb. 21 after the alert level returned to "new normal" last month. 

The email said masks would only be required in instructional spaces, research facilities and on-campus public transportation. The university supported voluntary masking in all other areas, such as dorms and Russell House. 

"We believe this update to our policy allows each of us to exercise good judgement consistent with our individual personal health goals and supported by institutional policy," Interim Provost Stephen Cutler and Interim Chief Health Officer Jason Stacy said in the email said. 

The university said SAFE testing, wastewater monitoring and daily campus tracking would continue. 

Approximately 72% of students, 68% of staff and 83% of faculty are vaccinated, the university reported.

USC students, faculty and staff can get tested and vaccinated on campus. Monthly student testing is required.

USC's COVID-19 dashboard calculates an alert level based on 11 factors including campus testing, isolation capacity and campus case burden. The current alert level is set at new normal. 

USC updates its COVID-19 dashboard every Tuesday.


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