5 Miami U students test positive for COVID-19, health officials now contact tracing

5 Miami U students test positive for COVID-19, health officials now contact tracing
FILE - In this March 3, 2020, file photo, Hawaii state Department of Health microbiologist Mark Nagata demonstrates the process for testing a sample for coronavirus at the department's laboratory in Pearl City, Hawaii. (Source: Audrey McAvoy)

BUTLER COUNTY, Ohio (FOX19) - The Butler County General Health District (BCGHD) is investigating several COVID-19 cases among Miami University students with links to off-campus social gatherings in Oxford.

Miami University Dean of Students Kimberly Moore sent a letter to students, parents, and local organizations Friday confirming five students living off-campus had tested positive for the virus.

“The Butler County General Health District is currently investigating and contacting anyone believed to have been in close contact with an infected individual," Moore wrote. "Those who attended an off-campus student gathering on or after May 8 should monitor themselves for fever or other COVID-19 symptoms for 14 days from their last day in Oxford.”

Health officials say the off-campus gatherings happened from May 8-16. The officials are now contacting anyone believed to have been in close contact with an infected individual.

“We want everyone potentially exposed to be aware so they can self-monitor and get tested quickly to reduce potential further spread. Should you receive a call from the Health District, we encourage your complete cooperation,” Health Commissioner Jennifer Bailer said in a news release.

Officials are asking anyone who was at off-campus social gatherings in Oxford between that time period to self-monitor for fever or COVID-19 symptoms for 14 days from your last day in Oxford.

If you develop a fever or any symptoms, call your healthcare provider or an emergency room for instructions.

“Having an existing partnership with Miami University has been extremely helpful to our investigation. They have been supportive and collaborative during this entire process,” Bailer said.

Anyone with a potential exposure is asked to stay home and limit time with family, friends, and roommates.

Ohioans can call the Ohio Department of Health COVID-19 hotline with any questions

The call center is open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. at 1-833-4-ASKODH (1-833-427-5634).

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