LACDPH classifies cluster of COVID-19 cases on the Hill as an outbreak
There is a COVID-19 outbreak in a residential building on the Hill, a UCLA spokesperson said in an emailed statement Monday. The Arthur Ashe Student Health and Wellness Center reported three students tested positive for COVID-19. (Kanishka Mehra/Photo editor)
By Kari Lau
Oct. 26, 2020 5:37 p.m.
This post was updated Nov. 1 at 8:00 p.m.
There is a COVID-19 outbreak in an on-campus residential building, a UCLA spokesperson said in an emailed statement Monday.
The Ashe Student Health and Wellness Center reported to UCLA that three students tested positive for COVID-19 in the De Neve Birch residence hall, said UCLA spokesperson Ricardo Vazquez in an emailed statement.
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed late Saturday night that the cases constitute an outbreak, Vazquez said.
LACDPH guidelines define an outbreak in a university residence as three or more COVID-19 cases that occur in the same place within 14 days. UCLA guidelines do not require the university to release the location of COVID-19 cases unless an outbreak occurs, Vazquez said.
UCLA Housing sent De Neve Birch residents a courtesy notification Saturday morning that there were three people who tested positive and were a part of the COVID-19 cluster. UCLA Housing added in the letter that LACDPH may categorize the cluster as an outbreak.
The students who tested positive for COVID-19 are self-isolating, Vazquez said in a separate emailed statement.
The LACDPH and UCLA’s Exposure Management Team have reached out to individuals who were in contact with the students, Vazquez said.
De Neve Birch residents and staff will be tested twice a week for COVID-19 starting next week, he added. Students in other residence halls will also be tested twice a week.
Undergraduate students living in university housing are expected to follow a number of measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19, according to the UCLA Housing website. Students must regularly survey themselves for COVID-19 symptoms, limit guests in their room to one UCLA student with a housing contract at a time and enter isolation or quarantine if they receive a positive test result, according to the website.
As of publication, more than 300 people in the UCLA community have tested positive for COVID-19, according to UCLA’s COVID-19 tracker.
Students can receive a free COVID-19 test at the Ashe Center, regardless of insurance status.