Oregon State University positive COVID-19 cases spike, classes remain in person


Jess Hume-Pantuso

Oregon State University students working at the Student Experience Center on Jan. 6 organize containers for COVID-19 testing. From Jan. 3 to Jan. 9, 6,972 tests were administered and 785 positive cases of COVID-19 were reported at OSU.

Patience Womack, News Contributor

Oregon State University reported 785 positive cases of COVID-19 between Jan. 3 and Jan. 9, out of 6,972 tests administered in that timeframe. 

For the week of Dec. 6 to 12, the last week of fall term, there were 774 COVID-19 tests administered and 3 positive cases reported. 

The higher rate of testing during the first week of winter term may be due to OSU students living in resident halls on campus being required to take a COVID-19 test to move back into the dorms. 

Even with the uptick in COVID-19 cases due to the Omicron variant around Oregon over the past few weeks, university officials said on Jan. 10 that they continue to plan for on-campus classes to remain being held in person for the time being. 

Unless it becomes necessary due to an instructor needing to isolate and not teach in person, or instructors and supervisors determine that a course may need to be taught remotely for a short period of time due to many students being in quarantine, classes being moved to a remote format are not currently being considered on a university-wide basis.

“We have communicated with OSU teaching faculty expressing the need for compassion and understanding as we all work together through these challenging times,” said Alex Gitelman, vice provost for Academic Affairs, and Kevin Dougherty, associate vice provost and dean of students, in an all-students email on Jan. 10. 

OSU’s COVID-19 Safety and Success dashboard is updated weekly and accounts for COVID-19 tests administered on OSU’s Corvallis, Ore. and Bend, Ore. campuses. The tests are provided by Willamette Valley Toxicology. 

OSU guidelines require that any students and staff on campus that are unvaccinated test weekly. The dashboard report includes the total number of student testing and required staff testing through OSU testing sites or Student Health Services. 

Oregon hospital Region 2, which includes Benton, Lincoln, Linn, Marion, Polk and Yamhill counties, has two adult ICU beds available, or 2%, as of Jan. 11, and 12 adult non-ICU beds available in the region. 

Oregon Health Authority reported 8,040 new confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 as of 12:01 a.m. on Jan. 11, bringing the state total to 486,202.

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