UTA student contracts COVID-19, university confirms

This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses. The Tarrant County Public Health department’s lab now has the capability to test for the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

This story is developing.

A UTA student has been infected with COVID-19, according to an Office of the President email on Saturday morning.

This comes after UTA extended spring break by a week in response to the coronavirus outbreak on Thursday. Classes will resume March 23 and transition online until further notice.  

The email did not give details about the student or how they became infected with the virus. 

Tarrant County Public Health has reached out to those who were in contact with the infected student and they have been placed in self-isolation as a precaution, according to an Office of the President’s email sent Sunday. These individuals have been asked to monitor their health and the department is doing daily check-ins.

On Friday, Tarrant County declared a local state of disaster and there are four case of COVID-19 in the county. It is not yet clear if the UTA student is an additional case or part of the ones previously reported.

As of Saturday morning, there are over 2,000 cases in the U.S., according to data retrieved from Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering. This includes about 50 deaths and at least 12 recoveries. 

Arlington declared a local state of disaster Friday on the heels of Gov. Greg Abbott declaring a state disaster for all Texas counties, and President Donald Trump declaring the coronavirus outbreak a national emergency. 

UTA has increased its sanitization of public spaces on campus, which includes touch points such as handrails, door handles, common spaces, common area seating and tables, said Jeff Carlton, executive director of communications and media relations, in an email. Additional hand sanitizer dispensers have been installed across campus as well.

@Brian_L8

news-editor.shorthorn@uta.edu

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