University of Mississippi student tests positive for COVID-19

Published 4:48 pm Monday, March 16, 2020

A University of Mississippi student has tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), according to Chancellor Glenn Boyce.

Boyce made the announcement in an email to students, faculty and staff on Monday.

The undergraduate student was traveling internationally and reported to the University that she tested positive for COVID-19. The student returned to the U.S. last week, going directly to her family home in another state, where she went into self-quarantine. Boyce’s email went on to say the student never visited Oxford or the university campus since returning back to the United States.

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“The health and safety of our campus is always our top priority,” Boyce’s email read. “We urge all of you to heed the guidance issued by public health officials.”

The University also updated its travel policy to include a ban on domestic travel. All university-affiliated international and domestic travel is prohibited until further notice. Faculty who believe their travel is essential must apply for a waiver with the Office of the Provost. Staff who believe their travel is essential must apply for a waiter through their respective Vice Chancellor. All personal international travel is strongly discouraged by the University.

“From a public health standpoint, it is important for University officials to know who in our campus community has traveled outside of the country since the outbreak,” Boyce said.

The Mississippi State Department of Health announced 283 people have been tested for COVID-19 and there have been 12 presumptive cases confirmed as of Monday. Two of them are north of Jackson, in LeFlore and Monroe Counties.

President Donald Trump recommended groups of 10 or more be prohibited, which was also recommended by the MSDH during a press conference on Monday.